The Best Countries for Cryptocurrency Products and dApps — An Analysis Backed by Data
In this article, I am going to try to uncover some of the better countries to target your cryptocurrency products or dApps based on five parameters —
1. State of cryptocurrency regulation in the country
2. The population of the Country
3. Number of internet users
4. Number of mobile phone users
5. Nominal GDP per capita and Literacy rate.
Let’s get started.
From CoinDesk’s 2018 Q3 State of Blockchain report combined with some of my own research, we’re able to gather the present state of cryptocurrency regulation in most countries in the Americas, Europe, and Asia. However, I could not gather details regarding the state of regulations in about 50% of African nations due to insufficient data. Constructing a map, and classifying the state of regulations as legal, unregulated, restricted, banned and unknown, it would look something like this.
With this data as the primary reference, let’s get to crunching some numbers.
Top 20 countries where digital currencies are legal or unregulated
a) By population
The above is perhaps not the best indicator of the potential market size of a crypto economy. Let’s narrow it down one step further.
b) By the number of internet users
This can be useful information when planning the launch or expansion of your exchange, wallet or dApp. Let’s put the extended data set on a map for a better perspective
Finally, let’s take a look at the same filter, but this time with the number of mobile phone users.
c) By the number of mobile phone users
As you can see from the above two tables, we see a common set of countries emerge, most of them being developed nations from the Americas or Western Europe. Not surprisingly, some of these countries listed above, have the highest percentages of digital currency ownership among their populace, with Europe averaging above 9%.
One could easily spot that the representation from Asia and Africa were quite underwhelming in the above charts. For our next analysis, let’s shift focus exclusively on Asian and African nations.
Top 25 countries in Asia and Africa
a) By the number of internet users
The above table paints a sad picture for the state of cryptocurrency regulations in the Asian and African markets. Out of the 2 billion internet users in these nations, more than 1.5 billion (70%) reside in countries which have restricted cryptocurrencies or have banned them. Ironically, the same ten countries above (marked in red) account for nearly 800 million out of the 1.7 billion (approximately 47%) people in the world that are unbanked.
For our final comparison, let’s look at nations with lenient regulations from Asia and Africa, and factor in nominal GDP per capita and the literacy rate. GDP per capita is simply a measure of a country’s economic output that accounts for its number of people.
b) By Nominal GDP per capita (Countries with friendly regulations)
The table above also highlights the countries with a high count for the number of internet users. These countries may be the ones which could prove to be the biggest market for dApps (and digital currencies at large) in Asia and Africa.
Finally, while sorting out the data to create the analysis above, I noticed a rather neat correlation between the cryptocurrency regulatory status of a country and its nominal GDP and literacy rate — The average literacy rate among all countries which have legal or friendly regulations towards digital currencies is 95% with a nominal GDP per capita a little above 32,000 USD. In stark contrast, the above two values stood at 69% and 8500 USD in nations that had banned digital currencies (well below the global literacy rate of 86% and worldwide GDP per capita of 11200 USD).
In summary, it looks as though digital currency regulations are taking shape much better in developed nations, in comparison to some of the developing and underdeveloped countries of the world. With this, we come to the end of my very first experience trying to crunch numbers and analyze patterns in demographics and cryptocurrency regulations.
I would sincerely appreciate any feedback (or corrections) regarding the above-presented data as well as suggestions for better methods to analyze cryptocurrencies against demographics. Hit me up on LinkedIn if you wish to receive the updated excel workbook with the above data set.
Hope you had a good read.