How the Island of Bali got in trouble over social media “Bitcoin Heaven” posts

After Bitcoin’s value was slashed in half, dropping from almost $20,000 to $10,000 in just two weeks, many investors started to pull their money out of accounts and wonder how to proceed next. The news that South Korea is banning cryptocurrency trading and investors’s accounts has undeniably helped the value of the whole crypto market to drop significantly for just under a week.

Amidst the downturn in the market, it seems that one place is doing just fine when it comes to Bitcoin. That is the Island of Bali in Indonesia. It all started with social media posts that tourists put on their profiles about the ease with which Bitcoin was trading on the Island. Then, the Indonesian authorities took the problem in their hands by launching an investigation on the use of Bitcoin in the Island.

Causa Iman Karana, the Head of Bank Indonesia’s representative office in Bali, said that they found out about Bitcoin transactions in Bali and their popularity through social media posts. What followed was an undercover investigation mission that discovered many businesses in Bali accepting Bitcoin as payment. Those included cafes, restaurants, travel companies, hotels and some other establishments. Most of them have already stopped accepting Bitcoin, reported The Daily Times.

It became clear that businesses that accepted Bitcoin as a payment did so from foreigners and the amount they did accept was for transactions above 243,000 rupiah, which is the official currency in Indonesia. This amount actually equalled 0.001 Bitcoin. According to Karana, the transactions with Bitcoin took more than 1 hour to be processed and the fee was not little either.

The Bank Indonesia banned all cryptocurrency trading and transacting as a response to fear of high deregulation and heat in the market. Just like many Asian countries, Indonesia is now worried about the scale of the crypto “mania” and its effect on citizens, security and government control.


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