Crypto exchanges operating in India could see the use of the country’s Unified Payments Interface (UPI) restored, with a new proposal expected to be submitted to the Indian State government by cryptocurrency advocacy group Bharat Web3 Association (BWA). It comes after the supervising body for the real-time interbank payments network claimed in 2022 that it was not aware that crypto exchanges were utilizing the UPI service. BWA’s proposed submission will be the third, with two other entities having already submitted similar proposals.
BWA Joins the Call for Access to UPI
BWA was formed after the Blockchain and Crypto Assets Council (BACC), an organization under the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI), was dissolved due to India’s uncertain regulatory environment. Both groups have called for the restoration of UPI for crypto firms in India. The National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), a division of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), stated in April 2022 that it was not aware of UPI’s use by crypto exchanges. NPCI’s statement led to CoinSwitch Kuber and WazirX halting deposits in Indian rupees.
India’s UPI is a widely used real-time interbank payment system facilitating P2P and P2M transactions and was developed by the NCPI in 2016.
Crypto Adoption Rises despite Regulatory Hurdles
Despite the challenging regulatory landscape, adoption of cryptocurrencies in India continues to grow. Crypto exchanges are grappling with the industry’s unfavorable regulatory policies, with high taxes on digital asset transfers affecting growth. However, a recent report predicts that the number of cryptocurrency users in India could reach over 156 million by the end of 2023.