India Crypto Exchange Founders Decamp to Dubai. Will Mass Exodus Ensue?

19 April 2022, 22:00 GMT+0000
Updated by Geraint Price
19 April 2022, 22:00 GMT+0000
In Brief
  • Co-founders of India-based WazirX have reportedly made a move to the crypto hub of Dubai from India.
  • Dubai has lately become a crucial crypto hub with UAE emerging as a hotspot in the region.
  • Meanwhile, industry players in India eagerly await legislative clarifications from the government.
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While India struggles to figure out its crypto policy, two co-founders of cryptocurrency exchange WazirX have reportedly moved to the Middle East.

Business Today confirmed that Nischal Shetty and Siddharth Menon have moved with their families to the crypto hub of Dubai. 

Two years ago, Sandeep Nailwal, the co-founder of Polygon, along with his team also moved to Dubai citing legislative hurdles to Web3 development in India. 

Nailwal recently remarked that India is facing a mass exodus of Web3 talent and investors due to its ambivalence to crypto.

Shetty took to Twitter to state that crypto will boost businesses and crypto-friendly countries will witness higher growth, possibly taking a jibe at India’s somewhat anti-crypto stance. 

And this is not the first time that the founder has expressed his views on a social platform regarding his country’s crypto framework, or a lack of one.

The news also comes at a time when industry players await further clarification from the government concerning pending crypto legislation. 

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India levies 30% tax on crypto

Since the government implemented a new regime that levies a 30% tax on crypto taxations from April 1, exchanges have been asking the administration to reconsider its policy decision following discussions with stakeholders. 

Shetty had earlier commented that the lack of clarity in taxation will likely result in losses for both the government and industry players.

Dubai has recently become a crypto hub for both investors and creators. The country has hosted several crypto conferences, granting legitimacy to the space. It has also awarded licenses to foreign crypto businesses to open offices. 

Indian exchanges reported a dip in trading volume after the country implemented its “regressive” taxation regime. Bloomberg noted in its latest report that daily trading volumes on Indian crypto exchanges have plunged by 88% to 96% since their 2021 peak.

WazirX, which is India’s biggest crypto exchange, took a 93% hit during the same period. 

Source: CoinGecko