Pressure from RBI forced us to halt crypto trading in India: Coinbase CEO

Pressure


Top cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase quit India operations owing to "informal pressure" from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), its CEO Brian Armstrong has revealed for the first time. The US-based and Nasdaq-listed exchange had halted payments via unified payments interface (UPI) mode on its app in India last month. In the company's earnings call late on Tuesday, Armstrong said that the company disabled the UPI "because of some informal pressure from the Reserve Bank of India". "There are elements in the government there, including at the Reserve Bank of India, who don't seem to be as positive on it. And so they -- in the press, it's been called a 'shadow ban', basically, they're applying soft pressure behind the scenes to try to disable some of these payments, which might be going through UPI," Armstrong told analysts. The crypto exchange reported its first net loss as a public company of $430 million in the first quarter this year. The revenue dropped 27 per cent to $1.17 billion, down from $1.6 billion in the first quarter of 2021 and monthly users were also decreased by more than 19 per cent to 9.2 million, as the global crypto market goes through a mayhem. Armstrong said that the RBI's move "may be actually in violation of the Supreme Court ruling, which would be interesting to find out if it were to go there".




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