The National Bank of Ukraine(NBU) bans individuals from buying cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin with the national fiat currency, the hryvnia (UAH).
According to the announcement, Ukrainians can now only buy Bitcoin and other crypto tokens with foreign currency, with a monthly maximum of 100,000 UAH ($3,300).
Crypto purchases, like electronic wallet deposits, foreign exchange transactions, and travel payments, are classified as ‘quasi cash transactions’ by the NBU.
The central bank hopes to avoid an unproductive outflow of capital from the nation by imposing limits on such transactions while Ukraine is under martial control.
“Quasi cash transactions […] are mainly carried out to circumvent the current restrictions of the National Bank, in particular for investing abroad, which is prohibited under martial law. Therefore, the relevant transactions should be interpreted as leading to unproductive capital outflows,” the announcement noted.
NBU confirmed that the demand for foreign transactions has risen dramatically as a result of martial law, which has pushed civilians to flee Ukraine.
The essential amendments were adopted by the Ukrainian government as part of an NBU board resolution dated April 20, 2022, according to the NBU. As per multiple reports, some Ukrainian banks have already implemented such measures.
The ban has caused quite a stir, considering the Ukraine has been working hard to legalize crypto while the country is under martial control. Last month, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy even signed the law on Virtual Assets, to make crypto legal in the country with the support of NBU and the National Commission on Securities and Stock Market.