Thailand cracks top five nations for crypto currency users

Thailand’s embrace of digital business has propelled it into the top five nations for cryptocurrency users, according to an industry website that measured the number of users and businesses accepting cryptocurrency payments.
The Merchant Machine website said that Thailand has 3.62 million cryptocurrency owners, accounting for 5.2 per cent of its population.
The U.S. held the top spot followed by the United Kingdom and India before Thailand. The Kingdom was followed by France, the Netherlands, Viet Nam and Colombia.
“Cryptocurrency has grown massively in popularity over the past few years, with more and more people choosing to invest in digital currencies,” Merchant Machine added.
That remains true in Thailand even though the Securities and Exchange Commission has banned the use of cryptocurrency as a method of payment, citing risks to the financial system.
Nonetheless, the Kingdom’s central bank has developed a digital currency for interbank payments, recognizes the power and potential of blockchain – which underpins digital currencies – and has created sandboxes to test out cryptocurrency use. In fact, the government’s policy is to evolve into a cashless society.
Regulators do allow holding and trading cryptocurrencies, and even offer tax breaks and holidays for those engaged in those transactions. A survey earlier this year by the Yougov website found that most Thai owners of cryptocurrencies bought them as an investment, rather than for use in paying for goods or services.
The most popular cryptocurrencies in Thailand are Ethereum and Bitcoin.