Iran is Pushing Ahead with Creating State-Backed Cryptocurrency

News and Analysis

Iran’s plans to create a national digital currency took a significant step closer to realization after the country’s National Cyberspace Center revealed that the draft of the state-backed cryptocurrency project is now ready.

According to the local news outlet Financial Tribune, the project has been prepared at the behest of President Hassan Rouhani.

Saeed Mahdiyoun, the deputy director in charge of drafting regulations for Iran’s High Cyberspace Council, also revealed that the project had been one of the key topics at recent meetings of the organization.

Technical details about Iran’s national cryptocurrency remain unknown, although it could have similarities with the practice of crisis-plagued Venezuela, whose government introduced its national cryptocurrency El Petro in February this year

Earlier reports said Iran considered creating a state-issued cryptocurrency in order to circumvent both existing and future sanctions imposed by the U.S. government, including a complete ban on acquiring U.S. dollars that was enacted earlier this month.

In addition to that, Saeed Mahdiyoun said that the state authorities will soon remove the existing uncertainty around cryptocurrencies, since the Central Bank of Iran is set to introduce its official stance on the issue at the end of September.

Currently, cryptocurrencies operations are banned by Iranian banks and credit institutions, following the money laundering concerns that were first raised in December 2017.

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