The state earns money

Anyone who has been in the crypto universe for a while cannot help but shake their head in amazement: Initially demonised and discredited as a highly volatile money-destroying machine, it is quite astonishing how now everyone from the district bank to the national state wants to participate in the success of digital assets. The approaches are different – while the bank wants to succeed with custodial services and Bitcoin ATMs, the state takes its share in the form of taxes. The approaches in the individual countries vary and range from minimal taxation to quite self-confident tax rates, the success of which may be doubted.

Portugal: 0 per cent

In the “promised land” for crypto investors, a draft law provided for the taxation of cryptocurrencies in Portugal, but the parliament rejected such a law for the time being. So it remains the case that no tax is payable on crypto profits as long as these profits do not constitute primary or secondary income. How long this will remain the case is questionable – in the long run, Portugal’s government will not want to do without this additional income. Until that happens, the country on the Atlantic coast will remain very attractive for crypto enthusiasts in terms of taxation.

Argentina: Capital gains tax plus 0.6 per cent

In principle, Argentina is considered extremely crypto-friendly – but it still wants its share of its citizens’ earnings: cryptocurrency transactions have been subject to capital gains tax since 2017. Now the Argentine central bank has introduced a cryptocurrency transaction tax for crypto exchanges that have bank accounts in Argentina. As a result, crypto exchanges will have to pay a tax of 0.6 per cent, but realistically this will be passed on to users in the form of fees.

Austria: 27.5 per cent

Since March 2022, the new law on the taxation of profits from the sale of cryptocurrencies has been in force in Austria. Profits will now be subject to 27.5 per cent KESt, and to make it easier to collect the taxes, the regulation stipulates that domestic crypto exchanges will withhold the tax and pay it to the tax office on behalf of investors. Encouragingly, the new provisions are only applicable to cryptocurrencies acquired after 28 February 2021 and the obligation to deduct KESt applies for the first time to income from cryptocurrencies arising after 31 December 2023.

India: 30 per cent

In India, the digital rupee is to come this year – and will be heavily taxed. Indian Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced that income from cryptocurrencies, gifts of digital assets and NFTs will be subject to a flat 30 per cent income tax. In view of the 15 per cent at which short-term capital gains from the sale of shares are taxed, a strong announcement. If the intention in India was to increase the adoption of digital assets, 30 per cent is probably not very motivating.

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