Bitcoin Regulation: Where is Bitcoin Legal? – SpendMeNot

where is bitcoin legal?

can we use it anywhere in the world?

Reading: Is bitcoin illegal in us

spendmenot did extensive research on the subject.

and we create a map for you:

This map shows the regulation of bitcoin

spoiler alert:

The results may surprise you.

Bitcoin Regulation - A Map

Bitcoin, the first digital currency ever created, has been around for a decade. Although it is a relatively new medium of exchange, it has rapidly gained popularity and is now widely used throughout the world.


Cryptocurrencies are decentralized, so they are not regulated by a particular bank or monetary authority.

And since there is no universally accepted way to control cryptocurrencies, it is up to each government to pass legislation regarding the regulation of bitcoin.

the thing is:

Some governments are opposed to this new form of currency and have banned it altogether. others have accepted it and decided that it is better to regulate it.

This leaves us with the question:

How is bitcoin regulated around the world?

Now that you know the basics of bitcoin legality by region, let’s get into more detail.

and by the way, if you plan on using btc, you should definitely check out our list of companies that accept bitcoin.

Who regulates bitcoin in North America?

Bitcoin is becoming quite a popular medium of exchange in North America.

1.the united states federal government accepts bitcoin as a form of payment.

(source: currency)

  • you can use bitcoins to pay for goods and services in the us.
  • mining bitcoins is legal in the us. uu.
  • the federal government taxes virtual currencies.

Americans involved in the crypto market want to hear the answer to a vital question:

is bitcoin legal in the united states? And if so, to what extent?

Well, you’ll be glad to know that the federal government allows businesses to accept cryptocurrency as a form of payment. According to the guidance issued by the Financial Crimes Control Network in 2013, you can use bitcoins to buy goods and pay for services.

so next time you shop online, make sure crypto is included as a payment method and go for it!

In addition to using bitcoins to shop, you can use them to make a profit, since bitcoin mining is legal in the united states. just don’t forget to report any earnings you earn on your tax return as they are taxed by the federal government! those are the laws at the federal level, but now you probably want to know:

“How is bitcoin regulated at the state level?”

Regulations vary by state, with some taking a looser approach and others being stricter when it comes to trading cryptocurrencies. it is always better to check first.

2. Canada is one of the first countries to allow the use of cryptocurrencies.

(source: currency)

  • You can trade cryptocurrencies in Canada.
  • Digital currencies are not an official currency in Canada.
  • Cryptocurrencies are taxable.

Bitcoin regulations in Canada are similar to those in the United States. Canadian residents are legally allowed to buy and sell bitcoin and even use cryptocurrency to buy goods and pay for services.

You can also find bitcoin ATMs, both in the US and Canada. you can use them to exchange cash for bitcoins or vice versa. To do that, insert the cash into the machine and the equivalent amount of bitcoins will be sent to your bitcoin wallet.

However, despite all this, digital currencies are not considered legal tender in the country.

The official currency of Canada is the Canadian dollar. this means that financial institutions do not manage or supervise digital currencies.

Here’s the thing:

See also: Bitcoin Regulation: What Is Happening and What to Expect? – Softjourn

In Canada, bitcoins are considered a commodity. Any profit you make from trading bitcoins must be reported and will be subject to income tax law.

Who regulates bitcoin in South America?

Bitcoin is mainly accepted in South America.

3. Bolivia is the only country in South America where Bitcoin is illegal.

(source: currency)

  • cryptocurrencies were banned in 2014.
  • the head of asfi has compared them to a pyramid scheme.

Bolivia is the only country that has completely banned cryptocurrencies. In 2014, the Central Bank of Bolivia announced in an official statement that the use of any type of currency that was not issued or regulated by the government or an authorized entity was illegal.

The ban includes bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, such as peercoin and primecoin. According to the Central Bank of Bolivia, this ban was implemented to protect the national currency, as well as to protect citizens from the risks of using unregulated currencies.


The head of the financial system supervisory authority asfi has compared them to a pyramid scheme in a statement about a crypto-related arrest.

4. Bitcoins are not prohibited in Argentina.

(source: currency)

  • There is no government regulation of bitcoin in Argentina.
  • Cryptocurrencies are not considered legal tender.

since no law has been passed in this country that prohibits the use of cryptocurrencies, they are legal.


Only coins issued by the Central Bank of Argentina are considered legal tender. bitcoins are legal property.

So, if you ask yourself: “Is bitcoin mining legal in Argentina?”, then the answer would be yes.

As stated above, the reason is the lack of regulations.

who regulates bitcoin in europe?

if you travel to europe, you probably won’t have a problem using bitcoins.

5. bitcoin is legal in 45 countries in europe.

(source: currency)

  • exchanging bitcoin for fiat currency is VAT free in ireland.
  • switzerland has two licensed cryptocurrency banks.
  • the first bitcoin ATM in europe settled in bratislava, slovakia.

Cryptocurrencies are legal in almost all European countries. moreover, some national governments are looking into the details of crypto regulation.


according to the eu vat directive, the exchange of currencies used as legal tender is exempt from vat. The Revenue Commissioners, the Irish government agency that deals with taxation, published guidance stating that exchanging bitcoin for fiat currency is exempt from VAT.

but as with many things, it is switzerland that takes the lead in terms of bitcoin regulation. the swiss financial market supervisory authority has decided to grant banking licenses to two crypto banks, sygnum and seba.

and as the use of cryptocurrencies normalizes in europe, more and more countries install bitcoin ATMs. The first Bitcoin ATM in Europe was installed in the Slovakian capital of Bratislava on December 8, 2013. Other European countries that have joined the Bitcoin ATM club include the United Kingdom, Austria, Spain, the Czech Republic, Italy, Greece and many more.

6. North Macedonia is the only European country where cryptocurrencies are illegal.

(source: national bank of the republic of north macedonia)

  • Investing in cryptocurrencies is illegal in North Macedonia.
  • the national bank warns that crypto transactions are associated with criminal activities.

north macedonia seems to be the only country in europe where you could have legal problems related to bitcoin. According to the country’s national bank, investing in virtual currencies is illegal.

The central bank also warned its citizens that speculating with cryptocurrencies is a financial risk, since the platforms where these exchanges are made are not regulated by law.

bitcoin regulation in asia

Asian countries have different approaches to cryptocurrencies.

7. bitcoin is legal and regulated in japan.

(source: currency)

  • bitcoin is considered legal property in japan.
  • Cryptocurrencies are regulated by the Japan Financial Services Agency (FSA).

Cryptocurrencies are mostly considered a gray area in Asia. Due to the lack of government regulations on cryptocurrencies, it is difficult to know when they cross the line between legal and illegal.

with one notable exception:

Unlike most Asian countries, Japan is a world leader when it comes to cryptocurrency regulations. that is, cryptocurrencies are defined as legal property.

In case you’re interested in the details or wondering who regulates bitcoin in japan, you’ll be glad to know that there is a government agency responsible for this. It is the Financial Services Agency (FSA), which has regulated the use of cryptocurrencies under the Payment Services Act.

Bitcoin exchanges are regulated by the Japan Virtual Currency Exchange Association (JVCEA), which oversees compliance with cryptocurrency regulations.

8. south korea and pakistan are improving bitcoin regulations.

(source: coindance)

  • South Korea is imposing regulations on the transparency of cryptocurrency exchanges.
  • Pakistan will regulate cryptocurrencies to combat financial crimes.

In addition to Japan, another East Asian country is working to impose regulations regarding currencies. In South Korea, cryptocurrency exchanges are regulated by the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) under the Financial Services Commission (FSC). These regulations will increase the transparency of transactions. in turn, this will make money laundering more difficult.

Pakistan is also working on regulating cryptocurrencies to combat financial crimes such as money laundering, tax evasion and terrorist financing. Specifically, the Financial Action Task Force (FAT) recommended government regulation of Bitcoin.

9. China has banned cryptocurrency trading.

See also: The Bitcoin Bubble Is In Terminal Stage (BTC-USD) | Seeking Alpha

(source: currency)

  • china banned initial coin offerings (ico).
  • there were rumors of banning bitcoin mining.
  • china plans to launch a national cryptocurrency.

However, seeing how roughly 80% of cryptocurrency mining happens in China, we assume that crypto traders want to know:

“is bitcoin banned in china?”

well, it all started with the ban on initial coin offerings (ico). this is a financing process that uses cryptocurrencies. The reason for the ban was that unauthorized fundraising is illegal in China.

There was also a proposal to ban cryptocurrency mining because it wastes a lot of resources. the reason most bitcoin mining happens in china is because of cheap electricity.

However, it now appears that China is planning to launch its own national cryptocurrency. it is possible that the ban on Chinese cryptocurrencies will be lifted when this happens.

bitcoin regulation in australia and oceania

australia and new zealand have taken decisive steps to legalize bitcoins.

10. Australia has legalized cryptocurrencies.

(source: currency)

  • Australia legalized cryptocurrencies in 2017.
  • Cryptocurrencies are subject to tax.

Cryptocurrencies have been legal in Australia since 2017. According to the Australian Tax Office, Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are even subject to tax.

Companies dealing in Digital Currency Exchange (DCE) must be registered with the Australian Transaction Reporting and Analysis Center (AUSTRAC). this is to ensure that transactions comply with their regulations and to prevent financial crime, money laundering and terrorist financing.

so if you’re mining bitcoin in australia, don’t forget to register and pay your taxes!

11. bitcoin is legal in new zealand.

(source: currency)

  • bitcoin can be used as a form of payment in new zealand.
  • cryptocurrencies can be used as payment for wages in new zealand.
  • income in the form of cryptocurrencies is taxed.

new zealand is clearly a step ahead of the rest of the world in terms of bitcoin regulation.

look at this:

Since September 1, 2019, companies have the option to pay their employees in bitcoin. Payments can be made in the form of cryptocurrencies as long as the cryptocurrency is pegged to fiat currency and can be exchanged with fiat currency.

In addition, an employment contract is required. Payments will be taxed like any other income. this provision does not apply to self-employed workers.

12. samoa and vanuatu do not recognize bitcoin as legal tender.

(source: currency)

  • A business license is required to promote cryptocurrencies in Samoa.
  • the central bank of vanuatu does not encourage investment in cryptocurrencies.

and although australia and new zealand are more lax with their regulations, the government of samoa does not share the same sentiment. the central bank has warned citizens that bitcoin is not recognized as legal tender in samoa. Investment in cryptocurrencies in the country is also not encouraged.

However, cryptocurrency laws exist in this small island nation. If business owners want to promote cryptocurrencies in Samoa, they need a business license. and if they don’t comply with the money laundering prevention law, they can face fines and imprisonment.


Regulations in Vanuatu are similar to those in Samoa. According to the Reserve Bank of Vanuatu, Bitcoin is not recognized as legal tender, nor is any other cryptocurrency. Vanuatu’s central bank also warns against investing in cryptocurrencies, stating that they are not regulated. the only legal and official currency is the vatu.

bitcoin regulation in Africa

The legality of cryptocurrencies varies considerably by country.

13. bitcoin is legal in four African countries.

(source: currency)

  • cryptocurrencies are legal in south africa, namibia, zimbabwe and nigeria.
  • south africa does not recognize bitcoin as legal tender.
  • a significant number of south africans they own cryptocurrencies.

We cannot say that cryptocurrencies are totally legal in most of the countries in Africa. it’s just that some countries, like south africa, namibia, zimbabwe and nigeria haven’t regulated or banned them altogether.

The South African Reserve Bank has not changed its position on virtual currencies since 2014, stating that they are not supervised, supervised or regulated. There are no cryptocurrency laws regarding the use and exchange of bitcoins. Since cryptocurrencies are not recognized as legal tender, they cannot be accepted as a form of payment.

Interestingly, this doesn’t seem to stop South Africans from owning bitcoin. According to an online survey, South Africa is among the top 5 countries with the most cryptocurrency owners.

14. bitcoin is illegal in three African countries.

(source: currency)

  • Cryptocurrencies are banned in Algeria, Egypt, and Morocco.
  • Algeria banned cryptocurrencies in 2017.
  • Cryptocurrencies are prohibited by Islamic law in Egypt.

However, some African countries like Algeria and Egypt have bitcoin regulations. The purchase, trade and possession of virtual currencies are prohibited by law in Algeria.

Egypt’s central bank has also warned about the risks of trading cryptocurrencies. furthermore, bitcoin is considered haram in egypt, prohibited by sharia law. however, a new bill is on the way that will lift this ban on cryptocurrencies. The central bank of egypt is expected to introduce a new regulation of cryptocurrencies.


Most of the countries where bitcoin is considered legal are in America and Europe. An existing bitcoin regulation means that the specifics of bitcoin usage, trading, and mining have been legislated. such is the case of the united states, switzerland, ireland, australia and new zealand.


Cryptocurrencies are also popular in some Asian countries such as Japan and South Korea. others are working to regulate them to prevent tax evasion, money laundering and other illegal activities.

And while there are a few countries in Africa and Oceania where cryptocurrencies are accepted, most remain a gray area.

See also: Bitcoin Evolution: opiniones sobre el bróker en 2022

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