UNCTAD Highlights — Is Banning Cryptocurrency That Problematic?

2 min readNov 28, 2021


Article by: Xinhua News

Wang Jiangang

PHOTO: Dogecoin, Etherium (ETH), Bitcoin, Stellar (XLM), and other cryptocurrencies. (Executium/Unsplash, accessed from https://unsplash.com/photos/rayxJJNKyhc)

Two steps forward, one step back — how important is the right to privacy, in light of increasing cyber-insecurity?

The constant insecurity of cryptocurrency users is a heated subject of debate, early on since today’s fourth Committee Session of the United Nations Conference on Trade on development (UNCTAD). The USA remarked that “surveillance is the best thing that we can do” to manage cryptocurrency’s volatility — or to manage the instability of cryptocurrency’s value. Juxtaposing that opinion is the delegate of People’s Republic of China, believing that a full-ban of cryptocurrency is the best option to protect its civilians — with delegates of Algeria, Bolivia, and Indonesia following suit.

Interestingly, the delegate of Algeria proceeded to ask, “wouldn’t that violate [individuals’] authority over [personal] privacy?”

As succinctly summarized by the delegate of China, “privacy breaches are done at a minimal, and even if privacy is breached, it’s necessary to track cybercrime”.

Perhaps, you’d also beg the question: why does cybercrime occur so much in the realm of cryptocurrency? Quoting from the delegate of Indonesia, financial illiteracy is a penultimate issue, especially for innocent, future cryptocurrency users that are star-struck by the trendy virtual currency — commonly perceiving it as an “easy gold mine”.

Thus, transfer of knowledge and technology should be a future solution. The delegate of Indonesia advocates for the utilization of existing blockchain analytics providers; not only could they analyze where illicit transactions occur, but fraudulent transactions could automatically be detected.

Several questions still linger: how applicable are the aforementioned solutions, and how much research needs to be conducted to be able to effectively implement such frameworks? Quoting from the delegate of Algeria, “not all countries are that capable, and we need to respect all Member States’ [financial] particularities.”

Banning or restricting cryptocurrency’s usage has its hardships. However, noting that minimal research on the new currency has been done, and little risk management mechanisms have been successfully implemented domestically, banning may not be as horrible as it may seem.

“Banning is not forever. Maybe we’ll jump in, when cryptocurrency is more viable,” remarked China’s representative, followed by nods from several Member States.