Anti-Crypto Countries

Where in the world has been the slowest to catch on to crypto?

Cryptocurrencies have quickly gone from a little-known technological development to a global revolution in the way we approach the world of finance.

More people than ever are now familiar with crypto, the blockchain, and the concept of decentralised finance, with huge numbers of people investing in digital currencies.

While cryptocurrencies have attracted attention all around the world, not every country has been equally quick to adopt them as a normal part of their financial lives. To investigate this further, we have conducted a study to reveal the countries that are the least engaged with cryptocurrencies.

The most anti-crypto countries

1. Saudi Arabia Anti-Crypto Score: 8.83

Saudi Arabia has the highest anti-crypto score of 8.83 out of 10, making it the country that is the most anti-cryptocurrencies. Crypto is legal in the Middle Eastern nation however it is banned in banks and it also scores 0 on the Crypto Adoption Index.

And while a relatively high number of people in Saudi own crypto, it only amounts to 1.48% of its population.

2. Denmark Anti-Crypto Score: 8.50

Denmark is the second most anti-crypto country with a score of 8.50.

With no Bitcoin ATMs in the country at all and just 1.39% of people owning any crypto, it seems like the Danish people are yet to be fully convinced of the potential benefits that digital and decentralised currencies can offer.

3. Iceland Anti-Crypto Score: 8.30

In third place is Iceland which received an overall anti-crypto score of 8.30 Just 1.01% of Icelanders own any cryptocurrency, and there are no Bitcoin ATMs, while the Chainalysis Crypto Adoption Index saw the Nordic nation earn a score of 0.

Iceland even took the step of cutting power supplies to Bitcoin miners due to a shortage of hydro energy supplies.

4. Namibia Anti-Crypto Score: 8.30

Also scoring 8.30 out of 10 and placing in joint-third place is Namibia. Namibia is amongst the places with the lowest interest in crypto, with just 13,782 searches per million people.

It also has a low Crypto Adoption Score of 0.02 and despite being legal, crypto is banned in banks.

The countries where owning crypto is the least common

1. Iceland Percent owning crypto: 1.01%

Iceland has the lowest rate of crypto ownership in the OECD at just 1.01%, indicating that digital currencies are yet to become widely popularised among the general population.2

2. Luxembourg Percent owning crypto: 1.06%

Luxembourg has the second lowest level of crypto ownership, with just 1.06% of people in the country owning any crypto.

3. Ireland Percent owning crypto: 1.35%

Ireland takes third place with crypto ownership of 1.35%, which indicates a very low level of engagement with cryptocurrencies in the country.

Countries with no Bitcoin ATMs

While Bitcoin ATMs are not a necessary part of trading crypto, they do make it easier to integrate cryptocurrency into everyday life and indicate that a country is more likely to promote crypto ownership and accept payments in more than just fiat currency.

Here we can see which countries are yet to introduce any Bitcoin ATMs, holding back crypto enthusiasts from making the most of their decentralised currency.

Countries with the fewest crypto searches

1. Japan Crypto searches per million people: 8,796

Japan has the fewest searches for crypto-related terms per head than any other country. With only 8,796 searches per million people, the Japanese perform just under 2,000 fewer crypto searches than second place India.

2. India Crypto searches per million people: 10,755

India has the second lowest rate of crypto searches at 10,755 per million people, suggesting that people in the country are much less interested in finding out more about cryptocurrency and its applications.

3. Nigeria Crypto searches per million people 12,590

Nigeria recorded the third lowest rate of crypto searches with 12,590 per million people. While crypto searches are low in the West African nation, they have been increasing in recent months as the local currency drops in value.

Countries with the lowest Crypto Adoption Index score

1 . Iceland & Luxembourg Chainalysis Crypto Adoption Index Score: 0

Iceland and Luxembourg are the countries with the joint lowest score on Chainalysis’ 2021 Crypto Adoption Index, with both scoring zero.

2. Ireland Chainalysis DeFi Adoption Index Score: 0.01

Japan has the third lowest score on the Chainalysis DeFi Adoption Index with a score of just 0.01. Crypto adoption in Ireland has actually dropped slightly in the last year.

As demonstrated here some countries are more anti-crypto than others, but it is undeniable that there is a rise in cryptocurrency usage, as well as interest and knowledge from people all around the globe. If this trend continues in the future, perhaps some of the staunchly anti crypto countries on this list will adopt it more, whilst others move the other way, only time will tell.


We wanted to find out which countries are the most anti-crypto. To do this, we looked at a range of factors including crypto ownership, crypto-related Google searches, and the number of Bitcoin ATMs in each country compared to the population. We also considered each country’s score on the 2021 Chainalysis Crypto Adoption Index. When looking at the legality of crypto in each country, we assigned each nation a score out of 3. 3 meant crypto is legal, 2 meant crypto is legal but banned in banks, while 1 meant crypto is legal but with other, more significant restrictions.

These factors were weighted equally and combined into a single score, allowing us to reveal the countries that have been the slowest to adopt crypto.