Bitcoin Exchange Volume in Ukraine Soars 200% as War with Russia Sparks Currency Concerns

Bitcoin trading volumes (BTC) and altcoins have surged on one of Ukraine’s top crypto exchanges following the Russian invasionas the data shows.

Depending on the monitoring resource CoinGecko, on February 24, volume on Kuna nearly tripled to over $4 million.

Cryptocurrencies are on the radar of Ukrainians

When the armed conflict with Russia began, the impact on the fiat currencies of both countries was immediately apparent..

While the Russian ruble suffered notably more, the ukrainian hryvnia also fell, reaching 30 per dollar in what would be a new historical low.

Ukraine, which this month has finally ratified a law that legalizes cryptocurrencies after many comings and goings between legislatorssaw how, as expected, interest in alternatives skyrocketed.

The effect was obvious on seven-year-old Kuna, whose volumes were less than $1 million on Feb. 21.but nearly $4.1 million three days later.

According to data from CoinGecko, the fervor has already started to subside after the initial rush, coinciding with the stabilization of fiat rates against the US dollar and other major currencies.

Less clear were the kuna exchange rateswhich showed a curious differential with the spot price of bitcoin. At the time of writing, the BTC/USD pair was trading at $38,300 on Bitstamp, while the Kuna dollar pair was above $40,000.

The stablecoin Tether (USDT), meanwhile, was at $37,800 per bitcoin.

Cryptocurrency trading volume for Kuna with popular pairs (screenshot). Source: CoinGecko

The central bank strengthens monetary freedoms

A distinct argument for entering the bitcoin space, meanwhile, came from government currency controls this week.

On Wednesday, the National Bank of Ukraine began to restrict cash, limiting hryvnia withdrawals to 100,000 UAH ($3,353) per day, and outright banning cross-border currency purchases and withdrawals.

A Facebook post confirmed that the Bank was also trying to establish a stable exchange rate of the hryvnia.

In the meantime, Russia’s central bank began intervening in currency markets to prop up the ruble’s slide on Thursday, with several moves appearing in the past 24 hours..

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