Saudi Arabian monetary agency has issued a formal statement stating that cryptocurrency trading is illegal in the country. They have released a list of websites and social media accounts that are actively promoting cryptocurrencies and trading. They say that no company or individual has been licensed for such practices.
Like India, which says that cryptocurrencies are being used for illicit activities, Saudi officials believe that since dealing with cryptocurrencies are outside the purview of the government, they will be used for similar illegal activities.
It is quite funny to see Saudi Arabia working on joint project with UAE for using blockchain for cross-border transactions but hate the idea of cryptocurrencies, including the king, bitcoin. In fact, Ripple also signed a deal with central bank of Saudi Arabia for taking advantage of Ripple’s xCurrent for doing cross border payments in a much faster way.
It is interesting to see National Crime Agency saying cash is being used for most illegal activities and use of cryptocurrencies for such activities is relatively low. May be Saudi Arabia will be more liberal to crypto trading in coming months.
Here is a video about Bitcoin being halal or not.