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CIS Issue Brief on regulating Crypto-asset advertising in India

Posted by Aman Nair and Vipul Kharbanda at May 25, 2022 12:00 AM |

Over the past decade, crypto-assets have established themselves within the digital global zeitgeist. Crypto-asset (alternatively referred to as cryptocurrency) trading and investments continue to skyrocket, with centralised crypto exchanges seeing upwards of USD 14 trillion (or around INR 1086 trillion) in trading volume. 

One of the key elements behind this exponential growth and embedding of crypto-assets into the global cultural consciousness has been the marketing and advertising efforts of crypto-asset providers and crypto-asset-related service providers.In India alone, crypto-exchange advertisements have permeated into all forms of media and seem to be increasing as the market continues to mature. At the same time, however, financial regulators such as the RBI have consistently pointed out concerns associated with crypto-assets, even going so far as to warn consumers and investors of the dangers that may arise from investing in crypto-assets through a multitude of circulars. 

In light of this, we analyse the regulations governing crypto-assets in India by examining the potential and actual limitations posed by them. We then compare them with the regulations governing the advertising of another financial instrument, mutual funds. Finally, we perform a comparative analysis of crypto-asset advertising regulations in four jurisdictions - The EU, Singapore, Spain and the United Kingdom- and identify clear and actionable recommendations that policymakers can implement to ensure the safety and fairness of crypto-asset advertising in India.

The full issue brief can be accessed Here