The Indonesian Blockchain Association Positively Welcomes Bahtsul Masail’s (Discussion Forum Among Islamic Scholars) Response to Justify Crypto Assets Trading


Asosiasi Blockchain Indonesia (The Indonesian Blockchain Association) is Indonesia’s official blockchain and digital asset association. The growth of the crypto asset industry in Indonesia is currently showing a quite drastic increase in transactions, the Minister of Trade, Muhammad Luthfi said last year the trading volume of crypto assets was only Rp. 65 trillion, but in 2021, for the first five months only, crypto asset transactions reached Rp. 370 trillion. Until now, there are still many questions from related parties regarding crypto asset transactions from the perspective of Islamic law which is currently starting to attract public attention.

Yenny Wahid, founder of the Islamic Law Firm (ILF) and Director of the Wahid Foundation, initiated the Bahtsul Masail (Discussion Forum Among Islamic Scholars) activity to discuss halal and haram crypto transactions. Quoted from Wahid explained about crypto assets which are considered halal by some parties because the crypto asset system as a medium of exchange is actually more free from usury than fiat money and conventional banks, with a blockchain system, transactions occur peer-to-peer without intermediaries. Some parties also argue that crypto assets can be said to be halal as long as they are not prohibited by the state or government.

The ILF presented a number of scholars in the Bahtsul Masail which was held virtually on Saturday (19/6), including the caretaker of the Sukorejo Islamic boarding school KH Afifuddin Muhajir, the caretaker of the Al-Anwar Sarang Islamic boarding school KH Abdul Ghofur Maimun, the Deputy Chairperson of the PBNU LBM KH Abdul Moqsith Ghazali, and KH Asyhar Kholil and Habib Ali Bahar. Also present were general speakers who are competent in their fields, including the Head of the Commodity Futures Trading Supervisory Agency (BAPPEBTI) Indrasari Wisnu Wardhana, the Indonesia Stock Exchange – Pandu Patria Sjahrir, Founder and CEO of PT Pintu Kemana Saja – Jeth Soetoyo, and Co-Founder and CEO Indodax – Oscar Darmawan.

Bahtsul Masail produced several discussions regarding the halalness of crypto asset transactions, including: (1) crypto assets are wealth (mal) according to fiqh, so the crypto assets being discussed with Bahtsul Masail are assets in fiqh review. The definition is that if this property is stolen, the theft must be sanctioned, if it is damaged, it must be replaced, (2) because it is wealth, it is valid to exchange it as long as there is no gharar (uncertainty). Why was it decided that way? Because there is a difference in perspective between Musyawirin (former scholars) whether crypto asset transactions occur gharar or not. Some say crypto assets occur gharar, others say crypto assets do not occur gharar. The nature of this gharar is still debated, this is because each individual sees it from their own perspective. Nevertheless, the scholars of Bahtsul Masail agree that crypto transactions must not have gharar, it’s just that the scholars have different opinions regarding this. So, if it is said that in crypto assets there is gharar, then that is not allowed. For those who say that there is no gharar, as also supported by the cleric Bahtsul Masail, crypto assets may be exchanged, (3) The informants urge the public not to make this transaction carelessly if they do not have knowledge of crypto assets, (4) The informants encourage the government to immediately make strong regulations and strengthen guarantees to avoid misuse and irregularities in crypto transactions.

Indodax as one of the Start-Up bitcoin and crypto exchanges and as a member of the Indonesian Blockchain Association represented by the CEO of Indodax, Oscar Darmawan positively welcomed Bahtsul Masail regarding Halal Haram Crypto Transactions, Oscar hopes that Bahtsul Masail’s recommendation is to allow the trading of crypto assets legally Islam can be an input for policymakers in Indonesia. Because according to him, crypto assets already have a legal basis, namely regulations, and are supervised by the Ministry of Trade and the Commodity Futures Trading Supervisory Agency (BAPPEBTI).