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Kuwait prohibits all cryptocurrency use in new virtual assets ban

Users of cryptocurrencies and other virtual assets in Kuwait would be subject to Kuwait’s 2013 money laundering and terrorist financing laws.
The Bitcoin logo is seen on a Coinstar cryptocurrency ATM at a grocery store in Washington, DC, on January 19, 2023. (Photo by Stefani Reynolds / AFP) (Photo by STEFANI REYNOLDS/AFP via Getty Images)

DUBAI — Kuwait has banned all virtual asset transactions, investments and mining, according to an online statement released on Tuesday by the country’s Capital Markets Authority (CMA).

Virtual assets are defined as any asset that has digital representation of their value, that can be treated or digitally transferred, or can be used for payment or investment purposes, according to global watchdog the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). The CMA statement further clarifies that mining cryptocurrencies, a function needed to verify and process transactions, is also prohibited. 

Based on these definition, this means that Kuwaiti residents are also banned from selling or buying non-fungible tokens, gaming tokens and other similar assets that are digital, decentralized and hold financial value. However, digital representations of paper currencies, securities and other financial assets are excluded from the ban, according to the CMA statement. 

The authority also issued a warning about virtual assets being high risk with prices based on speculation that expose them to sharp and sudden declines.

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