Papua New Guinea and Cryptocurrency

Papua New Guinea Cryptocurrency Laws
Regulation of Digital Currencies: Cryptocurrency, Bitcoins, Blockchain Technology

There is currently an established public notice regarding the trading of cryptocurrency published by the Bank of Papua New Guinea (BPNG) and approved by the CMG Governor, Loi M. Bakani.[1] The notice reminds the public that BPNG does not issue or regulate cryptocurrencies (“i.e. virtual currencies or digital money such as bitcoin, Ethereum, EOS, Lite Coin and others”) and thus virtual currencies lack any legal tender status and is not accepted currency in Papua New Guinea.[2] The government, however, does seem open to adopting blockchain technology  as a platform for promoting financial inclusion. A closing speech by Minister Francis Maneke in 2017 portrayed the use of blockchain technologies in a positive light. The minister stated that he believed technology such as blockchain and virtual currency can “change people’s lives –  particularly in a nation like ours, in which 85 per cent the population is outside the banking system.”[3]

P.S. Insights on Cryptocurrency Legal Issues

Most jurisdictions and authorities have yet to enact laws governing cryptocurrencies, meaning that, for most countries, the legality of crypto mining remains unclear.

Under the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), crypto miners are considered money transmitters, so they may be subject to the laws that govern that activity. In Israel, for instance, crypto mining is treated as a business and is subject to corporate income tax. In India and elsewhere, regulatory uncertainty persists, although Canada and the United States are relatively friendly to crypto mining.

However, apart from jurisdictions that have specifically banned cryptocurrency-related activities, very few countries prohibit crypto mining.

Our Freeman Law Cryptocurrency Law Resource page provides a summary of the legal status of cryptocurrency for each country across the globe with statutory or regulatory provisions governing cryptocurrency.  The globe below provides links to country-by-country summaries:

Podcast:

The Freeman Law Project – Cryptocurrency Regulation and Taxation: A Brief Primer

Is cryptocurrency legal in Papua New Guinea?

Do you have questions about cryptocurrency, digital currencies, or blockchain technology?
Freeman Law can help with digital currencies, tax planning, and tax compliance. Contact us now to schedule a consultation or call (214) 984-3410 to discuss your cryptocurrency and blockchain technology concerns.


[1] Bank of Papua New Guinea, “Public Notice: Cryptocurrencies and Blockchain Technology”,   https://www.bankpng.gov.pg/news-events/cryptocurrencies-and-blockchain-technology/

[2] Id.

[3] Blockchain Technology and Financial Inclusion Seminar – Closing Speech by Minister for Communication & Information, Hon. Minister Francis Maneke, MP Talasea. | Bank of Papua New Guinea (PNG) Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea (bankpng.gov.pg), https://www.bankpng.gov.pg/media_release/speech-for-minister-for-community-information-hon-minister-francis-maneke-memeber-for-talasea-mp/

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