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Report: Taliban crackdowns have brought Afghanistan’s digital currency market to a standstill

گزارش: سرکوب‌های طالبان بازار ارزهای دیجیتال افغانستان را به بن‌بست رسانده است

Chainalysis, which is one of the most well-known collections active in the field of data analysis related to blockchain networks, recently a report In relation to the conditions of the digital currency market in the Middle East and North Africa, it has been published and said that although this geographical region is probably considered one of the smallest markets in the digital currency space in 2022, it has the fastest growth compared to other regions of the world. Is.

Report: Taliban crackdowns have brought Afghanistan's digital currency market to a standstill
The graph of the annual growth rate of the volume of digital currency transactions in different geographical regions.

Despite the overall growth of the digital currency industry in various countries in the Middle East and North Africa in the past year, one country has experienced a completely different situation and a kind of stagnation during this time; Afghanistan.

Afghanistan, which was ranked 20th among 154 countries around the world in the 2021 ranking of ChinaAlysis digital currency acceptance, has fallen to the bottom of the ChinaAlysis ranking since the Taliban government came to power in the country in August 2021 (August 1400). .

Less than two months ago, on the order of the Taliban authorities, several digital currency exchanges were closed and people were arrested for the crime of buying and selling these assets. The Taliban’s Ministry of Good and Prohibition of Evil has also considered the use of digital currencies equal to gambling and has declared it haram.

Investigations by Chinalysis researchers show that in the months of August and September 2021 (August and September 1400), right after the Taliban took control of Afghanistan, the intra-chain activities related to users living in this country reached their peak. From November 2021 (Aban 1400) to date, however, the value of intra-chain transactions received by users living in this country per month is estimated to be less than $80,000 on average.

It should be noted that the value of transactions received by users living in Afghanistan before the Taliban rule over the country was an average of 68 million dollars per month, which is significantly different from the statistics of the months after the Taliban rule.

Report: Taliban crackdowns have brought Afghanistan's digital currency market to a standstill
The value of transactions received by Afghan users in different months.

Taliban crackdowns during this period have had a terrible impact on the digital currency industry of Afghanistan. ChinaAlysis researchers say that with the current conditions of this country, people active in the field of buying and selling digital currencies living in Afghanistan have only three options in front of them; Fleeing the country, refraining from buying and selling digital currencies or accepting the risk of being arrested by Taliban agents.

Regarding the share of legal and illegal activities related to digital currencies in Afghanistan, an anonymous source said in an interview with Chinalysis:

Only a small part of activities related to digital currencies of Afghanistan [که همچنان ادامه دارد] It concerns young people who have a few hundred dollars of capital [برای تریدکردن] and I can say that for most of these activities, the only application I have seen was money laundering. It means that the source of this money is illegal and a large part of it is for paying bribes or drug money.

Despite this, ChinaAlysis’ anonymous source still believes that digital currencies can be a useful factor for Afghanistan and a way to provide services to people who do not have access to banks and financial institutions and are looking for a way to preserve the value of their assets and a suitable means for their payments. He says that the main problem in Afghanistan today is that it is very difficult to use this technology in this country for the mentioned cases; Considering the fact that few Afghans have access to smartphones and the communication networks in this country are very scattered.

This anonymous source says:

Almost anywhere in Afghanistan I can from US dollars [به‌صورت مستقیم] use. Even if it’s a cart on the side of the road selling potatoes, I’m 100% sure it’ll accept a dollar from me. They don’t pay me dollar for dollar, but they always do [برای خرید کالا] They accept, because they understand that the exchange rate fluctuates in this country. A solution based on digital currencies is useful in such situations, but always when a plan is being planned, the aforementioned obstacles are overlooked. So much difference between the designs presented [برای افغانستان] And the fact is that they usually never work.

With the disaster that the Taliban has brought to Afghanistan’s digital currency industry and the conditions that have arisen, it seems unlikely that there will even be an attempt to provide plans based on digital currencies in Afghanistan in the future; What if these plans are implemented. However, those who manage to secretly gain access to digital currencies may be able to insure themselves against the economic shocks seen in other countries.

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