Ukraine Central Bank Advises Bitcoin Not Legal Currency

Announcements, Crime, FinTech, News, Regulation | August 15, 2017 By:

The National Bank of Ukraine (NBU), has issued a statement about its regulations on digital currencies, aiming to clarify its legal status.

The central bank’s statement arrived in the wake of arrests in the country of several bitcoin miners this month in the capital, Kiev. A raid on the state-owned Paton Electric Welding Institute found 200 computers busily mining bitcoin in the institute’s unused swimming pool.

The NBU statement emphasized that there is only legal currency in Ukraine – the hryvnia – and that nothing else can be issued or used for payments. As with many other governments, the NBU cited the lack of regulatory oversight as the reason for its concern.

“In different countries, Bitcoin is classified in different ways – as virtual currency, money surrogate, intangible value, virtual goods and the like. For its part, the NBU has not officially supported any of the above definitions.”

The NBU statement does not carry the weight of law, but is merely advisory. Still, the raid points out that police do take the prohibition seriously.