Coinbase Is Now Offering Crypto Trading Services In India

Crypto exchange platform Coinbase is now offering crypto trading services in India, the world’s second-largest internet market. The announcement comes shortly after the exchange started including support for payments instruments Unified Payments Interface (UPI) and immediate payment service (IMPS) in India, unlocking its full capabilities in the world’s second-largest internet market.

This is the first time Coinbase will be making its services fully functional in India. The exchange launched UPI and IMPS at its maiden event which took place on Thursday. It also added that it was looking to increase its product offerings as well as continue to improve its services in India.

With the newly launched mode of payment, Indian users will be able to perform both deposit and withdrawal transactions from/to their bank accounts. As a way of encouraging people to sign up to the platform, Coinbase said it will give a signup bonus of $2.65 to users who join the platform.

Coinbase is yet to disclose the banks it is partnering with for the UPI payments and with the central bank’s rigid views on cryptocurrencies, it is still quite a mystery how Coinbase plans to capture the hearts of banks in India that seem to still have an aversion towards cryptocurrency transactions. Indian banks still follow an overturned directive from the Reserve Bank of India. Two years ago, the Supreme Court overturned the apex bank’s ban on cryptocurrencies, giving room for them to thrive.

In February this year, the Deputy Governor of the Reserve Bank of India, T. Rabi Sankar, while speaking at a banking conference spoke about cryptocurrencies. He said that cryptocurrencies were “specifically developed to bypass the regulated financial system” and that they are not backed by any assets or underlying cash flow adding that “they have no intrinsic value; that they are akin to Ponzi schemes, and may even be worse.”

T. Rabi Sankar also opined that “As a store of value, cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin have given impressive returns so far, but so did tulips in 17th century Netherlands. Cryptocurrencies are very much like a speculative or gambling contract working like a Ponzi scheme. In fact, it has been argued that the original scheme devised by Charles Ponzi in 1920 is better than cryptocurrencies from a social perspective.”

Coinbase’s co-founder and CEO Brian Armstrong said the company is placing a long-term bet on the world’s second-largest internet market. He added that Coinbase has made investments worth $150 million in Indian startups and plans to make more investments this year. It is pertinent to also know that Coinbase is a backer of two of India’s biggest crypto exchanges in the country – CoinDCX and CoinSwitch Kuber.

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