An experimental national cryptocurrency has been developed by Iran only days after the central bank of the country banned bitcoin trading. The news came at a time when its national currency plunged at its lowest and the return of US economic sanctions is looming in the country.
Digital currency fever: After central bank ban, Iran develops own national cryptocurrency
It has been only last week that the central bank of Iran prohibited local banks and credit institutions from dealing in cryptocurrencies like bitcoin in the wake of rising concerns regarding money laundering. The country is going through a currency crisis as Rial dropped down to its lowest ahead of the possible return of sanctions from the US.
Now, just a few days after the ban on bitcoin trading, the country is developing its own cryptocurrency as Mohammad Javad Azari-Jahromi, the Information and Communications Minister was quoted by the local media source, IRNA as saying:
“The central bank’s (ban) does not mean the prohibition or restriction of the use of the digital currency in domestic development.”
According to Iran’s youngest minister, Azari-Jahromi, the experimental cryptocurrency is ready ahead of the oncoming US economic sanctions:
“Last week, at a joint meeting to review the progress of the (local cryptocurrency) project, it was announced that the experimental model was ready.”
In February, he mentioned in a tweet that the Post Bank of his ministry had been working with local experts to develop an experimental cryptocurrency model that would be further presented to the banks of the country for review and approval.
Is Iran planning to circumvent sanctions via own cryptocurrency?
Countries around the world have either introduced regulations on cryptocurrencies or planning to launch their own virtual currency.
Russia and China are already developing their native cryptocurrencies. In 2017, Russia announced the launch of CryptoRuble as a way to bypass the US economic sanctions. Following the same idea, Venezuela launched Petro and recently, Crimea also announced its plan of a local digital currency to evade the sanctions from foreign nations.
Iran is currently going through a currency crises as its national currency, Rial crashed down hard amidst the concerns of the possible return of harsh US economic sanctions if US exists the multilateral Nuclear deal.
Previously, Azari Jahromi has stated that the experimental cryptocurrency would be backed by assets. Furthermore, when asked if this is a way to circumvent US sanctions, he commented with:
“All cryptocurrencies are capable of circumventing sanctions because they are not under the supervision of the U.S. financial regulatory body, and the national digital currencies are naturally capable of this.”
On May 12, 2018, the US President Donald Trump will make the decision if the nuclear deal will be extended or not.
Do you think Iran is developing its own national cryptocurrency to evade the US economic sanctions just like Venezuela and Crimea? Let us know your views in the comment section below!