Australian Senators Push to Make Bitcoin Official Currency

Two Australian senators have pushed for the Reserve Bank of Australia to embrace bitcoin and make it an official currency. Without it, the country risks its financial competitiveness and being left behind, they said.

Also read: Hedge Funds Investing in Cryptocurrencies ‘Exploding’ – 62 in Pipeline

Senators Call for Bitcoin to Be Official Currency

Australian Senators Push Reserve Bank to Make Bitcoin Official Currency
Senator Sam Dastyari

Labor senator Sam Dastyari and Liberal senator Jane Hume have pushed for the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) to “embrace bitcoins as an official form of currency,” the Sydney Morning Herald reported on Tuesday. Dastyari represents Australia’s largest State, New South Wales. Hume represents Victoria, the most densely-populated and second most populous state.

Without embracing bitcoin, Australia risks the future competitiveness its financial services industry worth $145 billion a year, the publication detailed, and quoted Dastyari saying:

This will be a revolutionary leap for the Reserve Bank and for Australian financial institutions. What we want to do here in Parliament is to create the political environment to allow that leap to occur.

When he first talked about bitcoin in the Senate, he recalled that one of his colleagues said to him, “I don’t get what the issue is, don’t they just melt all the coin bits they don’t use?” the publication detailed.

Australian Senators Push Reserve Bank to Make Bitcoin Official Currency
Senator Matt Canavan

Nationals senator Matt Canavan also publicly backed bitcoin. In September 2015, he asked the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) to investigate whether bitcoin companies were treated unfairly after major banks closed accounts of 30 such companies. However, in 2016, the ACCC cleared banks of any wrongdoing in this matter.

In 2014, he and Dastyari co-authored an article highlighting the attractiveness of the cryptocurrency. “The emergence of bitcoins and other forms of digital currency could revolutionise money markets,” they wrote. “If competition is so good in markets for products, why shouldn’t we allow competition in markets for currency too – why should governments have a monopoly?”

Australia Risks Getting Left Behind

Dastyari has been a major proponent of treating bitcoin as a regular currency since before the government removed its double taxation. He proposed back in 2015 that Australia could “establish itself as a global leader at the forefront of change in global attitudes towards digital currencies, and that the country shouldn’t risk being left behind by failing to investigate all the opportunities,” Afr reported at the time. He reiterated this belief again on Tuesday, adding that:

The question for Australia is are we going to follow or are we going to lead. We need to find a bipartisan way of doing this.

“We can’t compete with our Asian neighbours when it comes to producing cheap goods and services anymore,” he admitted but added that, “we can compete when it comes to financial services but that is going to mean big, bold decisions.”

Do you think the Reserve Bank of Australia will listen to the senators and make bitcoin an official currency? Let us know in the comments section below.

Images courtesy of The Age, Twitter, Sydney Morning Herald, Starts at 60

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  • Before Australia makes bitcoin an official currency, they will need to buy lots of bitcoin on the cheap. Only then they’ll make that announcement and the price will immediately soar.
    However they’ll probably wait for the prices to crash again before buying heavily. So, we will probably not have any announcement soon from the Australian government…

    • Government Mining just like they do with Gold and Minting

      • William Wanklyn

        At the current difficulty levels and energy requirements, wholesale Bitcoin mining by a central bank would not be a very profitable enterprise, particularly when the alternative is making entries in ledgers that cost nothing.

        • That’s what was said about Gold Mining, but it works. Amazing things can be pulled together when costs are zero. Difficulty is surpassed by numbers of mining units. And, output is controlled by regulated prices. When you have the law, that would be easy. Think like a King.

          • William Wanklyn

            Thing is the mining kit and the electricity required are not “zero costs”. The more mining horsepower, the higher the difficulty goes. Much cheaper to make entries in a book.

          • Yes. I do not argue costs. Higher mining activity only affects access and verification time to a specific miner in Solo(centralized mining has the time and concentration advantage) and longer verification times if you are part of a pool. Running a Government pool guarantees residual at all times no matter mining traffic, verification time, or block difficulty, or equipment and electricity cost. As a government does with mining on precious metals leases. I mine crypto and gold and know this very well. I even employ complex current managers to hold and mitigate current reflection back to the source for crypto. The Power Company does not see what I am actually using as I make DC at 1/3 the cost of AC. My gold mines use various sources and 1/8th of the power is renewable, sun and solar during sorting and maintenance, Diesel powered load centers for mining, all off grid and I made a 5 year plan for the cost of water from a private landowner nearby. A government would not have to do that, all they would have to do is make it favorable and launch the project in a region where the power and access is possible. Issue agreements to mine only in the mining pool divined by the government. Will Australia get to this point again as they have in the past with Gold. It would be much more profitable than mitigation of regulations and collecting a trickle of residuals. I would be most interested on how they protect it as a resource, an industry and allow commissions to regulate. Thinking like a King is required.

          • William Wanklyn

            Well King Little, sounds like you have it all well in hand. Congratulations on that.

          • HaHa Well, there is always something more to want. I am trying my best to be optimistic. Laws and regulation cost me much more than implementing an idea. EPA, BLM, MSHA; I would not wish it on the crypto world. I hope we do better.

    • William Wanklyn

      Will you let me know when its cheap? It seems to keep going up.

  • Ravi Bhojwani

    probably craig d whites dudes..

  • Blabamouth

    “why should governments have a monopoly? [on currency]”
    So here’s the thing, governments have no actual power over money creation and their currencies. The central banks do. They operate independently from government and in many cases do not answer to government. So who are they to have such endless power over money creation? Look at the Fed for example.

    • William Wanklyn

      Then the government enforces the Central bank monopoly right by forcing citizens to pay taxes in the “coin of the realm”.

  • Daniel


  • Locodoco

    This could be huge if a country like Australia adopts bitcoin.

    • sjs

      Yep, if ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’ were fruits and nuts, we’d all have a Merry Christmas. Won’t happen.

  • sjs

    Not an ice cube’s chance in hell. Australia isn’t that courageous nor that independent. Two senators are a voice in the wilderness. The $A is stable and has low inflation and the country low debt. Raw materials are being exported and the trade balance is not an issue either. Cryptos are not encouraged in Australia.

    • William Wanklyn

      No kidding. Shutting off exchange access to fiat banking is hardly encouraging.

      • sjs

        The banks were taken to court but the prosecution was unsuccessful – unsurprisingly.

  • Prof X

    That Bcash crap will never be an official currency because the evil national banks see it as a cryptocoup by one national bank. It will only be accepted as currency in one country and become the de facto crypto currency there.

    I don’t care about politics, national or within the crypto world, and respect yoir non-financial beliefs. I just want to predict the market herd so I can try to stay one step ahead.

    Actors both good and bad will have influence and I can’t control them, only try to anticipate their actions.

  • William Wanklyn

    Whether or not the central bank accepts Bitcoin is beside the point. They cannot regulate it, or create it. They have no reserve supply to pump into the economy at will.

    More interesting would be for the government to accept Bitcoin in payment for taxes.

  • Koen van Woensel

    I don’t get it. Australia is considering to say YES to something they can’t say NO to.
    Crypto currencies don’t need Australia to grow.
    The growth is uncontrollable.
    Thank God…

    • Adrian Zieniewicz

      I don’t think you see the point here and the actual validity of this case. If bitcoin were to become a legal currency, you could buy a house, a boat, a car and everything else for bitcoins not just drugs or pay for small things here and there. The exchanges and rallying bitcoin price don’t mean anything if its use stays so limited – we’re bound to the fiat as long as we can’t use bitcoin in everyday life.

      • Koen van Woensel

        Yes, you are right. I still embrase the breaking free from banks and governments to much. I want that, surely. But someday we all have to face the discussion about how to (keep) building and investing in things that are needed for quality of life like healthcare also for less fortunate, roads, education and so on. Just turning to crypto’s and turn our back to everyone else is not a way to enter the future.
        Someday we must try to get this elephant out of the room.
        If Australia will except bitcoins this can be a start off for opening the discussion about how to implement this all in a responsible society.

  • This is a normal reaction from central banks. Bitcoin has reached a pivotal point in human history and no one can stop it.

  • Dr. Bubó

    Someone could explain to me how the mortgage market would work using BTC? Since BTC doubling in value every couple of months, the repayment would bankrupt every borrowers. Or the lender should get back less BTC than he lent but why the hell anybody would lend that way??? That’s the paradox of deflation what nobody seems to understand here…

    • William Wanklyn

      Bitcoin is not a borrowers world. As a deflationary currency, it is always more expensive to pay back. The idea would be to save, the old fashioned way.

      • Dr. Bubó

        So, you saying it is not a currency but an asset? I agree.

        • William Wanklyn

          I am not sure why you are equating currency with debt, other than the fact that fiat currencies are all created through debt. So perhaps I agree, Bitcoin is an asset rather than a liability. Bitcoin also acts as a currency, in the same way as gold, in that it has been designed as a medium of exchange.

          Our world is built on unpayable debt. Inflation is supposed to be the bail out mechanism, but it is not working out that way. Our children and grandchildren are born into debt.

          Neither lender nor borrower be, says the maxim. We need to discover a better way and crypto forces the issue.

          • Dr. Bubó

            Where did you learn finance? Fight Club? Youtube?
            A money need to be inflationary. Period. If it is deflationary, it will stop being used as money and become an asset (investment). It happened so many times in history, you should learn about it.

          • William Wanklyn

            You are, of course, correct. However money is an asset. How can one have faith in keeping money if it dissolves in your pocket? So the need is to spend it, before it dissolves. Pumps up the economy, creates great piles of waste. Needs to have planned obsolesence in your manufactured products. The whole thing is a plan for unsustainable doom.

            It is you who need to learn, my friend.

          • William Wanklyn

            The topic is crypto as a deflationary asset/currency. The issue is where is a saver to place their value at risk.

            It is all very well to take the side of the borrower, who, of course, has the right to borrow large sums at low interest on minimal underwriting control.

            He needs low rates and an inflationary currency to help him pay off the debt.

            We retirees have a bag of assets that has to see us through to our demise, hopefully some left over for the kids. How are we to view an inflationary currency, coupled with record low interest rates to support us in our old age?

            Not happening. Go deflationary savings vehicle.

          • Dr. Bubó


    • RobSa

      We will adapt and innovate. There will be less usury.

      • Dr. Bubó

        Please explain how you gonna adapt and innovate… you don’t even understand deflation…

        • RobSa

          Well I guess if we use bitcoin there will be no accommodation built anymore.

          • Dr. Bubó

            You’d better wake up…

          • RobSa

            Are you trying to wake me up? What am I waking up to? You aren’t conveying any meaning because you are being to vague and obscure.

            I don’t have to adapt or innovate because I have no plans to go into debt.

            What are you having conniptions about? Is there no alternative to fractal reserve banking? Must our money always be derived from debt? Is that it?

          • Dr. Bubó

            “I don’t have to adapt or innovate because I have no plans to go into debt.”
            A lot to learn. Money needs to be inflatory. Mankind has been fighting deflation for thousands of years. If you solve the paradox how a deflatory money could help the economy, you’ll be given the Nobel prize. But first you need to understand the problem, because now you just don’t.

          • RobSa

            Are you worried that lower consumption will hurt businesses? I wouldn’t give that a second thought. I’ve never cared about the prospects of any business. That seems improper and strange.

            Are you worried about wages? I think people get paid too much in Australia. Are you worried about people not paying their debts off? Again I don’t care about that.

            We will work it all out. If there is some turbulence then it will be no greater than under our current system. Lets progress, away from fiat.

          • Dr. Bubó

            I see that you dont care, but you need to LEARN! Deflation has severe consequences, worse than you think!

          • William Wanklyn

            Deflation has very severe consequences for debtors. In our debt created world that leaves only one alternative. Jubilee.

            We must face the fact that there is no inflationary scenario which will have a significant impact on our debt loads, and we must realise that our loose money policies are not choices but imperatives to keep the ponzi rolling.

            The end to this is not far off, IMO.

  • That photo’s a 9.7 on the creepy scale.

    • sjs

      There’s more where that one came from, it’s called parliament and the senate.

  • Ed

    Is an “Official” currency the one where they point guns at people and force them to use it?