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Coinbase Disables Crypto Buying Using UPI in India, Days After Launch

However, Indians attempting to purchase crypto tokens from the Coinbase app are informed that the UPI payment method option is “currently unavailable.” 

“Purchases with this payment method are temporarily unavailable.”

The exchange said that currently, users could sell tokens via the Immediate Payment Service (IMPS) method. Buying cryptocurrency option is unavailable at the moment.

Regulatory Scrutiny In-Place

The immediate suspension of UPI payments follows a strange statement from the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), the governing body that oversees UPI, that read,

“National Payments Corporation of India would like to clarify that we are not aware of any crypto exchange using UPI.”

Per a source familiar with the matter, Coinbase had contacted the UPI operator, seeking clarity on its statement, which was released hours after the exchange announced its India launch. According to a local media report,

“It means little as clearly cryptocurrency is not a legal tender in India. A regulatory body like the NPCI will not approve it unless it is officially legal.”

Additionally, the source mentioned that regulatory uncertainty in India has also triggered crypto exchanges using UPI through payment aggregators. These are the third-party responsible for managing and processing merchants’ online transactions. The person added,

“Payment aggregators are partnering with exchanges and are operating through multiple merchant IDs (MID). Informally, they have been told about the current regulations, but there is business interest for them to process these payments for crypto.”

In response to the NPCI post, a Coinbase spokesperson said Friday that the company would comply with regulators and their work will be aligned with their rules.

“We are aware of the recent statement published by the NPCI regarding the use of UPI by cryptocurrency exchanges. We are committed to working with NPCI and other relevant authorities to ensure that we are aligned with local expectations and industry norms.”

Coinbase has been heavily recruiting in India, over the last six months, despite the government announcing “stringent” cryptocurrency tax regulations last month.

Kapil Jain of BSV Blockchain Association told CoinGeek,

“They [Coinbase] were heavily recruiting for the past six months. Compliance will be a beauty to watch in India. Coinbase won’t be able to get away by saying buzz words.”




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