The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority has been requested to ban more than 1,600 crypto websites by the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA). The action followed a complete crypto ban recommendation by the central bank, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP). Meanwhile, the country’s science minister said that the government intends to “regularize” crypto in the country.
Pakistan’s FIA Taking Action Against Crypto Websites, Backing Central Bank’s Crypto Ban Recommendation
Pakistan’s Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has written to the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) requesting the telecom regulator to block access to more than 1,600 crypto trading websites, Samaa TV reported Tuesday, citing FIA Director Babur Bakht Qureshi.
The director first revealed his intention to approach the Telecommunication Authority about blocking some crypto websites last week. He claims that cryptocurrency is being used for money laundering.
In addition, “Qureshi revealed that a list of individuals involved in the trade of cryptocurrency is being prepared,” the publication conveyed. He added that “These people will be arrested” when cryptocurrency is banned in Pakistan.
Furthermore, Qureshi said that action will be taken against individuals who promote cryptocurrencies in Pakistan. “These people are on the agency’s radar and soon an action will be taken against them,” the director was quoted as saying.
Pakistan Is Still Evaluating What to Do With Crypto
The government of Pakistan is currently evaluating whether to ban or regulate cryptocurrency.
Pakistan’s minister for science and technology, Shibli Faraz, said Monday at the country’s first blockchain summit hosted in collaboration with his ministry that the government intends to “regularize” cryptocurrency in the country. He elaborated that the finance ministry, the State Bank of Pakistan, and the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan are already working on a plan.
However, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has already made its decision to entirely ban cryptocurrencies. Last week, the central bank submitted a report to the Sindh High Court recommending a complete ban on crypto.
The Sindh High Court subsequently directed the law and finance ministries to evaluate the SBP’s recommendations and decide whether to ban crypto or allow some related activities in the country. The court asked the two ministries to submit their joint report in April.