Who takes gold in the crypto and blockchain Olympics? – Cointelegraph Magazine

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Cointelegraph Magazine

Each 4 years (normally), the world comes collectively in a celebration of sport and competitors at the Olympic Video games. In the spirit of Tokyo 2020, let’s take a look at nations which are deserving of gold medals throughout totally different spheres of the cryptocurrency and blockchain area.

The number of sports activities featured at the Olympics have modified over the years, and the present summer season Olympics in Japan incorporates a whole of 33 totally different sports activities. Thrilling competitions like skateboarding and browsing have been added for Japan as the international showpiece continues to evolve and undertake totally different sports activities.

The cryptocurrency and blockchain area is comparable in this regard. Many various working elements make for a colourful group each united and divided by their preferences of cryptocurrencies and blockchain platforms.

Let’s check out which nations and establishments take dwelling gold medals in their respective crypto and blockchain codes.

Gold for Bitcoin adoption goes to… El Salvador

Sports activities typically have followers cheering for the underdog and El Salvador has emerged as a kind of lesser-known gamers which have burst onto the international stage in 2021. The Central American nation grabbed headlines this yr because it formally grew to become the first in the world to recognize Bitcoin as legal tender

With out delving too deep into the specifics, El Salvador’s congress voted to go President Nayib Bukele’s Bitcoin Legislation which acknowledges Bitcoin (BTC) as authorized tender alongside the United States greenback, with 62 of a complete 84 votes in settlement with the new laws.



The regulation permits residents to pay for items and providers in Bitcoin, and Bukele additionally said that the Salvadoran authorities will assure the convertibility of BTC into USD at the time of any given transaction. The federal government plans to airdrop $30 worth of BTC to each citizen later this yr.

There have been critics of the regulation change each locally and abroad, however the general sentiment appears constructive for the adoption of Bitcoin and a change of notion towards the preeminent cryptocurrency. 

Nonetheless, there are just a few last hurdles that lie forward for the nation. Firstly, the Worldwide Financial Fund has issued its own warning about the potential downsides of nations adopting Bitcoin that presently have unstable inflation charges. 

Secondly, some residents of El Salvador have additionally expressed their skepticism of the transfer. A survey undertaken at the starting of July involving 1,233 residents revealed that just about half of the respondents knew nothing about Bitcoin. Of the ballot takers, 20% agreed with the transfer, highlighting the want for an academic marketing campaign to enrich the progressive transfer to make BTC a authorized tender in the nation.

Change is usually met with uncertainty and resistance, however in phrases of development and adoption, El Salvador takes the gold medal in this primary class.

Switzerland takes silver in the class, due to its crypto-friendly legal guidelines which have boosted the use of cryptocurrencies and firms working in the area. The USA clinches the bronze medal thanks to the efforts of Miami’s Bitcoin-friendly mayor Francis Suarez, who’s been driving varied initiatives to promote the use of BTC.

China leads the CBDC race, however anti-crypto insurance policies result in disqualification

China has been a powerhouse at the Olympics over the previous 20 years with its sporting program producing a effective pedigree of Olympic weightlifters, gymnasts, divers, shooters and martial artists. In the world of cryptocurrencies, the story is kind of totally different.

China has taken a stern stance towards cryptocurrencies and has continued this coverage in 2021, with its outright ban of mining fully rebalancing the Bitcoin mining ecosystem in consequence. 

Curiously sufficient, the nation is way forward of the world relating to the race to develop a fully-fledged central financial institution digital forex, or CBDC. Over the previous 18 months, China has piloted and rolled out important testing of its Digital Forex Digital Fee, or DCEP. 



Colloquially referred to as the digital yuan, residents began testing the facility through lotteries that award a small variety of individuals in varied cities with digital yuan, which they might use by means of a cell app to pay for items and providers at hundreds of taking part distributors.

There isn’t any denying that China has blazed the path for the growth, testing and roll-out of its CBDC. In the identical breath, the DCEP is a government-controlled program, and the specifics of the expertise and programs powering the digital yuan are shrouded in thriller.

Nevertheless, China’s current ban on mining in totally different areas and its zero tolerance of cryptocurrency exchanges implies that regardless of its well-developed CBDC program, it falls out of the reckoning for a medal. Fortunately, various different nations have additionally made important strides in creating their very own CBDCs. 

In the world of sports activities, followers typically get behind the underdog, and that is definitely the case with the Bahamas and its Sand Greenback CBDC. The nation has made important strides with the growth and testing of its very personal CBDC and became the first country to go live in October 2020.

The Sand Greenback ecosystem continues to onboard extra native banks and monetary establishments, paving the manner for widespread adoption of the CBDC and a completely digital fee surroundings. The Bahamas is the deserving recipient of the gold medal in this class.

Sweden has begun its first trial of pilot testing the e-krona CBDC with a few native banks and exterior individuals. Because it continues testing its system with native monetary establishments, Sweden earns the silver medal in this class.

Cambodia and Ukraine have been credited for their very own CBDC growth applications by a current report from PricewaterhouseCoopers, sharing the bronze medal in this class.

North America in the race for gold in Bitcoin mining

China was undoubtedly the gold medal incumbent of Bitcoin mining however that is shortly altering in 2021. Current estimates noticed China account for greater than 70% of the international hash fee earlier than varied mining operations have been forced to shutter in June.

These companies that have been capable of shortly search for greener pastures would welcome their mining gear. Whereas varied nations in Asia could be the closest locale to relocate to, North America is shortly turning into the new hub of cryptocurrency mining.

Analysis from the Cambridge Centre for Various Finance reveals that the hash fee of American-based miners has steadily been on the rise over the previous yr and the newest regulatory transfer in China has solely accelerated that time.

The Cambridge Bitcoin Electrical energy Consumption Index world map has but to completely reflect the knowledge from China’s regional mining bans in June, in order to get a greater understanding of how the Bitcoin mining hash fee’s geo-distribution has modified. The newest map reveals the distribution as of March 2021.




Nonetheless, from August 2019 to March 2021, the U.S. noticed a rise in its contribution to the international hash fee from 4% to 16%, making it second to solely China in phrases of hash fee. That is largely because of a concerted effort from main mining operators in America steadily increasing their hash rate by buying new gear throughout this era.

Kazakhstan has additionally opened its doorways to relocate Bitcoin miners from China and has seen its share of the Bitcoin hash fee climb to round 8% of the international fee, in keeping with Cambridge’s current report.

China’s share of the international hash fee has dropped under 50%, whereas the United States’ has climbed. This image, nonetheless, has nonetheless not factored in the main relocation of mining operations out of China.

It is likely to be too early to present the U.S. the gold medal for Bitcoin mining, however the nation appears to be on observe to take over in the leaderboards if it continues at the identical tempo. China’s mining clampdown outcomes in a disqualification, so the U.S. turns into the new gold medallist in this class.

Kazakhstan swoops in to take silver with its 8% contribution to the international hash fee, whereas Iran grabs the bronze medal with its 4.6% share. Canada and Malaysia simply miss out on the podium in the class.

The regulatory race goes all the way down to a photograph end

On the subject of progressive regulation that’s driving cryptocurrency adoption and use, there are a selection of nations which are vying for a crypto gold medal and can boast to have developed regulatory parameters which are serving to the trade thrive in their locales. 

Malta has positioned itself as the blockchain island for just a few years now and has attracted various the world’s greatest cryptocurrency exchanges and different crypto service suppliers. The nation’s regulatory package is enticing, as crypto holders do not need to pay capital positive aspects, wealth, or inheritance tax on their holdings, however buying and selling is topic to earnings tax. 

Singapore is one other nation that has established complete legal guidelines which have made it clear what cryptocurrency companies and service suppliers must do in order to function in the nation. Singapore can also be amongst a handful of nations that has zero capital positive aspects tax on cryptocurrency earnings. 

South Korea has lengthy been a rustic with an avid cryptocurrency person base and typically sees Bitcoin trading at prices far higher than the remainder of the world. The nation has since developed strict regulatory frameworks however has additionally pushed various initiatives to foster various services powered by blockchain technology.





Switzerland is one other robust contender in this class, given its progressive perspective towards the cryptocurrency and blockchain area. Earlier in 2021, the Canton of Zug finally rolled out its facility for residents to pay taxes in BTC and Ethereum (ETH).

Canada is featured prominently in this race, having change into the first nation to approve a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF). The launch of the first Bitcoin ETF in February 2021 was a huge success, with the Toronto Inventory Trade’s Function Bitcoin ETF seeing almost $100 million in commerce quantity on its first day. 

All in all, Canada has been hailed for its progressive regulatory environment for cryptocurrency use. Cryptocurrencies are classed as commodities, and their utilization for items or providers is handled as barter transactions. 

These 5 nations, subsequently, finish the crypto and blockchain regulatory race in a photograph end that’s exhausting to name. As we convey up the slow-motion replay, we are able to verify that Canada can take the gold in this class for its broad vary of crypto-friendly rules, from ETFs to clear tax legal guidelines and favorable mining tariffs.

Malta takes silver, as its standing as the “Blockchain Island” has waned considerably due to a change in governmental leadership that had initially championed this trigger. Singapore and South Korea share bronze in this class.

The U.S. takes gold for institutional adoption

The fashionable-day United States optimizes a capitalist society, and the disruptive nature of cryptocurrency has led some forward-thinking people, firms and establishments to maneuver shortly to leverage the potential of cryptocurrencies and blockchain expertise.

Enter MicroStrategy, a world chief in enterprise intelligence providers, which in 2020, pioneered a transfer to transform its fiat-based treasury holdings to Bitcoin. The corporate’s CEO, Michael Saylor, is a fierce Bitcoin proponent and has relentlessly acquired BTC since the agency’s determination to financial institution on the preeminent cryptocurrency in August final yr.

MicroStrategy’s transfer is broadly credited for influencing electrical car producer Tesla and its founder Elon Musk to determine to start investing in Bitcoin and, even at one level, accepting the cryptocurrency as a method of fee for its autos. 

Cryptocurrencies have been touted as a disruptive pressure in the funds trade, and American agency PayPal appeared to achieve first-mover benefit by saying that it could roll out cryptocurrency custody and fee providers on its broadly used platform.



American funding companies have additionally led the manner in permitting a wider viewers varied methods to achieve publicity to cryptocurrencies. None extra so than Grayscale Investments, which has various cryptocurrency trusts which are valued at over $33 billion thus far. Its flagship Bitcoin Belief is presently valued at over $24 billion alone.

These elements are greater than sufficient at hand America one other gold medal in the Crypto Olympics in the race for institutional adoption.

Canada takes silver in this class because of its crypto-friendly regulation and its progressive ETF legal guidelines which have seen it overtake its North American neighbor in that regard. Thailand walks away with a bronze medal right here, as its oldest banking establishment, Siam Industrial Financial institution, has dedicated $110 million to invest into the decentralized finance sector by means of its enterprise capital arm SCB 10X.


Numerous nations fall into the disqualification class for his or her various stances on cryptocurrency and blockchain expertise.

In February 2021, Nigerians have been caught off guard as the nation’s central financial institution successfully barred native banks from servicing cryptocurrency exchanges. For a rustic that also ranks as primary for Google’s search of Bitcoin, the transfer was criticized each domestically and overseas. Nigeria’s Securities and Trade Fee had been creating crypto regulatory plans which have been suspended in consequence.

India is another country that has a checkered past relating to its perspective towards the cryptocurrency area. The nation’s authorities has lengthy been threatening an outright ban on the use of Bitcoin, however that is slowly altering with discuss of asset classification offering correct regulatory frameworks and oversight for the burgeoning trade. 

India’s banking sector is still at odds with the cryptocurrency movement, with a few of the largest establishments reportedly cautioning clients about buying and utilizing cryptocurrencies. It’s clear that combined messages from India’s authorities and central financial institution in current years have created a swathe of uncertainty that may solely be addressed by correct schooling about the sector.

China’s current ban on cryptocurrency mining in totally different areas of the nation additionally sees it function in this disqualification class, as the transfer prompted main disruptions in the mining ecosystem, forcing operators to shut up store and search for greener pastures overseas.

The Chinese language authorities additionally issued directives to native banks to not service companies concerned in the cryptocurrency trade, which is trigger for higher concern. Chopping off integration with the conventional finance sector implies that residents in the nation are robbed of the skill to entry and use cryptocurrencies to their full potential.




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