Although Bitcoin has been declared an illegal payment and transaction instrument in the country, the government is still considering the cryptocurrency's use as an investment instrument, the Trade Ministry's Futures Exchange Supervisory Board (Bappebti) has said.
“Using Bitcoin as a payment instrument is prohibited, but how about using it as an investment instrument? Is this allowed or not?” Bappebti head Bachrul Chairi said on Tuesday in Jakarta, as reported by kompas.com.
Earlier on the same day, Bank Indonesia Governor Agus Wartowardojo said that using Bitcoin as a payment and transaction instrument violated Law No. 7/2011 on currency, which designated the rupiah as the only official transaction and payment instrument in the country.
Agus also threatened to revoke the permits of financial services providers that used the cryptocurrency as a payment and transaction instrument.
Bachrul said Bappebti was studying the possible use of Bitcoin as an investment instrument. He did not, however, mention when the study would be completed.
He added that Bappebti considered Bitcoin as a commodity. “Through the study, we want to see if Bitcoin can be treated as a digital asset,” he said.
Market supervision and development bureau head Dharmayugo Hermansyah at Bappebti said the organization saw great potential in Bitcoin product trading.
Separately, Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati said that no regulation in the country prohibited its citizens from investing in the cryptocurrency. “It is up to the people to use Bitcoin as an investment instrument,” she stressed. (bbn)