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Binance Australia partners with Koinly for tax reports as ATO ramps up compliance

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The Australian branch of leading cryptocurrency exchange Binance has increased the ability for users to accurately report tax liabilities amidst increased pressure from local tax authorities.

Binance has partnered with cryptocurrency tax startup Koinly to assist users grappling with ever-increasing tax obligations down under. Binance users in Australia have been offered access to Koinly’s tax reporting solution through the integration.

Koinly was founded in 2018 and supports over 600 exchanges and wallets, enabling users to sync their full crypto trading history with one central ATO-compliant platform.

The move comes as the Australian Tax Office (ATO) increases its effort to collect taxes on cryptocurrency gains. In July last year, the ATO targeted 350,000 crypto asset investors and holders with a letter regarding undeclared cryptocurrency gains.

In May 2021, the ATO doubled down with its efforts, reminding 100,000 Australian crypto users to report all gains on their tax returns — with a further 300,000 people expected to be prompted to do so as they lodge their returns. It estimated that there are over 600,000 taxpayers that have invested in crypto-assets in recent years. The ATO uses data matching with exchanges to identify users who may have tax bills.

In an announcement shared with Cointelegraph, Koinly founder Robin Singh explained:

“The ATO is collecting bulk records data from Australian crypto exchanges and comparing it to amounts entered on previous tax returns. Failure to declare crypto gains can attract a penalty of 75% of the outstanding tax liability.”

Binance is also increasing its educational efforts down under by hosting an end of financial year tax masterclass in collaboration with Koinly on July 22.

Related: Two-fifths of Aussie millennials think crypto investments beat real estate

Sam Teoh, of Binance Australia, stated that the crypto community has voiced their concern around tax compliance, adding “with approximately one in six Australians investing in crypto, taxpayers and tax agents alike are on a steep learning curve.”

Australians are not the only ones coming under the watchful eye of the taxman. In late May, the U.S. Treasury proposed crypto transactions over $10,000 be reported to the Internal Revenue Service.



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El Salvadorians take to the streets to protest Bitcoin law

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Protesters calling themselves the Popular Resistance and Rebellion Block have come out against El Salvador’s government passing a law making Bitcoin legal tender.

A Tuesday tweet from local news outlet El Mundo shows El Salvadorians carrying banners saying “no to Bitcoin” in the streets of San Salvador demanding a repeal of the country’s Bitcoin law. Legislative assembly members Anabel Belloso and Dina Argueta addressed the protesters after first meeting the group separated by a barrier of razor wire.

In a letter made available at the protest, the Popular Resistance and Rebellion Block group claimed that President Nayib Bukele passed the law making the cryptocurrency legal tender in the country without proper consultations with the people. It also cited the volatility of Bitcoin (BTC), comparing investing in the cryptocurrency to playing the lottery: “betting on the lottery is a voluntary act, while Bitcoin is required by law.”

Related: Coercion and coexistence: How El Salvador’s Bitcoin Law may change global finance

However, the group’s main grievance around the Bitcoin legal framework seemed to be centered around a perceived disparity in the cryptocurrency’s usage by the government when compared with the average resident in El Salvador. Protesters said Bitcoin “only serves some large businessmen, especially those linked to the government, to launder ill-gotten money.”

“Entrepreneurs who put their capital in Bitcoin will not pay taxes on their earnings,” said the letter. “In addition, to apply Bitcoin the government will spend millions of dollars of the taxes paid by the people.”

They added:

“Bitcoin would facilitate public corruption and the operations of drug, arms and human traffickers, extortionists and tax evaders. It would also cause monetary chaos. It would hit people’s salaries, pensions and savings, ruin many MSMEs, affect low-income families and hit the middle class.”

Though passed by El Salvador’s government and signed into law by Bukele in June, the law recognizing Bitcoin as legal currency in the country will not go into effect until Sept. 7. The Popular Resistance and Rebellion Block’s protest was aimed at government officials to demand the law be repealed. In addition, the World Bank has also refused to help El Salvador transition to a Bitcoin-friendly framework, given its “environmental and transparency shortcomings.”

Related: What is really behind El Salvador’s ‘Bitcoin Law’? Experts answer

During a scheduled visit by the U.S. State Department earlier this month, Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland suggested El Salvador ensure Bitcoin is well regulated and transparent, but did not explicitly say anything against the country’s move to a more digital economy. Some proponents of the law including Bukele have suggested Bitcoin could help facilitate remittance payments from El Salvador citizens living abroad and lessen the country’s reliance on the U.S. dollar.