As I noted here just a month ago, there is an ongoing global crypto race. Things are certainly speeding up with the global economy on the verge of collapse and crypto markets on a roll. The disparity between crypto holders and non-holders will grow further, and drive further adoption as those without will "FOMO in", as to not miss out on any more opportunity.
This is especially relevant this week as Russia banned cryptocurrency sales and India lifted all restrictions. The move by Russia comes at no surprise and the markets barely reacted, even with heavy downward pressure already being applied on the price. The Motherland has never been a very free-market oriented economy and relinquishing control over their currency doesn't seem like the prudent action of a dictatorial regime. Instead this is the gearing up of the Slavs to issue their own digital Ruble. The US has already mentioned a Digital Dollar in a major political setting when the first draft of stimulus came out in March, but was subsequently removed.
They will likely use their large gold reserves, possibly in tandem with another governemnt's such as China's, to back the state issue currency. This will of course not be a cryptocurrency in any means other than the name. It will exist only on a centralized and permissioned blockchain in which the government will be the sole validator. A move like this is obviously one aimed at keeping citizens in a pen in which the government can monitor and tax all economic activity.
The geographical distance between Russia and India is almost as vast as the stark difference between their policy measures. According to Bitcoin.com, the RBI has recently answered a crypto business owner's information request on regulation regarding cryptocurrency. The RBI said there was no ban on users or exchanges, and overnight the Indian sector of exchanegs saw a 10x increase in volume.
It is clear that a large portion of the population of India is still underserved in this market space. With such room to grow and now new payment and investment channels between traditional institutions growing, access to crypto will grow as well. The article notes banks are still hesitant to make these channels so readily available, but as Bitcoin grows in price they will certainly oblige in the future.
This is going to be a trend over the next 5 years to pay attention to; differing regulations on crypto across the globe. We live in a world with minimal barriers to travel, anyone with 500 dollars and some passport can get on a plane and move thousands of miles overnight. As some states like Russia implement draconian measures, emmigration will rise. At the same time, places like Malta, Portugal, Belarus, and more begin to advertise their pro-crypto stances they will see an increase in foreign direct investment.
Places like America still have a more secretive stance on blockchain and crypto, as they do not wish to outright condem it, but instead entertain the exchanges and foundations for the time being. American government is certainly not one to discharge authority and will surely grow more and more to be in-line with Russia, but in a more overt way. Be on the look out for the EARN-IT Act in the US, which threatens privacy coins like ZCash and other zero-knowledge proof coins.
With that being said, these cyrptocurrencies cannot be stopped and provide truly anonymous transactions as a way of circumventing these dictatorial rules. As more governments inevitable crack down, others will continue to loosen up and gain a strong foothold in the crypto industry as safe havens for development. A divergence in the political world order is coming over crypto and it will likely end in an ugly fashion, as all governmental quarrels do.