Citizens in Iran must stay away from the native token of Telegram messaging App known as Gram. According to Tehran times (Iran’s local media), anyone aiding Gram cryptocurrency will constitute a criminal act.
Gram Crypto Criminalized By Iran
Javad Javidnia, Secretary of Criminal Content Definition Task Force noted that;
Any cooperation with Telegram messaging app to launch Gram, the messaging app’s cryptocurrency, in Iran constitutes an action against national security and will be dealt with as a disruption to the national economy.
Telegram apparently raised $1.7billion in early 2018 from the private investors and later it canceled its ICO. Soon after, Iran banned the usage of Telegram App within the country. Reportedly, these steps were designed to ‘maintain peace’ within the nation since the Iranian government believed the gram token’s crowdfunding process will undermine the national currency of Iran, Rial.
Moreover, Javad Kavidnia elaborates the reason behind Telegram’s ban within the country,
“One of the most important factors in banning Telegram was a sense of serious economic threat from its activities, which was unfortunately marginalized and neglected due to the fuss in the political atmosphere of the country,”
Iran’s Concern To Secure National Economy
Besides Iran, Telegram is also banned in Russia. The ICO was majorly designed to support its upcoming blockchain platform called ‘Telegraph Open Network”. In contrast, SWIFT, a global payment network has already announced the partnership with several largest Iranian banks. With an intention to secure the country’s economy, Iran is stepping up with Ripple’s rival SWIFT. It elaborates the partnership as,
“Whatever the long-term implications for the US dollar, Iran now faces a more drastic short-term problem. Without SWIFT access, the country cannot be paid for exports or pay for imports. With an economy reeling from US sanctions – applied in 19 rounds since President Trump withdrew from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), or Iran deal, in May – Tehran might have to think outside the box to ensure its economic survival.”
Beside this crypto criticism, Iran is also planning to launch country’s first state back cryptocurrency. As reported by Coingape, Iran’s cryptocurrency will be backed by its fiat currency, Rial and it will soon go live as soon as CBI approves it. Moreover, the cryptocurrency is mainly intended to serve stress less financial payments, bank-to-bank settlements, and retail banking.
What’s your take on the Iranian government’s warning public against Telegram’s crypto?