11 crypto exchanges under investigation for tax evasion: minister


Eleven crypto exchanges have been under investigation for evading £81.54 million in goods and services tax (GST), the Treasury announced on Monday. GST authorities have so far collected ₹95.86 crore in these cases, including interest and penalties on tax fees.

Crypto exchange Zanmai Labs Pvt. Ltd, also known as WAZIRX, accounted for £40.51 billion, or more than half of the evaded amount discovered so far, followed by Coin DCX (bypassing 15.70 crore) and CoinSwitch Kuber (13.76 crore).

Other crypto exchanges that have been spotted circumventing GST, but in smaller amounts, include UnoCoin, Flitpay, Zebpay, Secure Bitcoin Traders Pvt. Ltd., Zeb IT Services Pvt. Ltd, Giottus Technologies Pvt. Ltd and Discidium Internet Labs Pvt. GmbH.

According to the Ministry in Lok Sabha, the recovery amount is lower than the tax evasion found in only two of the 11 exchanges. These include Giottus Technologies, where £3.85bn of tax evasion has been uncovered but only £3.50bn has been raised so far, and Secure Bitcoin Traders, where the evasion amount is £54,000, of which around £30,000 has been recovered.

“Few cases of Goods and Services Tax (GST) evasion through cryptocurrency exchanges have been uncovered by central GST formations,” Minister of State for Finance Pankaj Chaudhary said in response to an inquiry about cryptocurrency exchanges. “The government does not collect data on cryptocurrency exchanges,” he said.

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said last week that the government has not yet decided whether to ban or regulate crypto assets, also known as virtual digital assets, but will impose a tax on crypto transactions and profits. A decision on the regulatory structure, if one is to be introduced, is to be taken after “consultation,” she said.

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