Sergei Solonin, the General Director and co-owner of Qiwi, has announced that his digital payment systems company plans to issue a Russian crypto-currency by the next year. The digital currency will be called the BitRuble and be based on the blockchain technology, which is the foundation for the Bitcoin.
However, he does not rule out that BitRuble may also be based on the Bitshares financial platform, which is a sort of decentralized crypto-currency exchange. Nonetheless, Qiwi is now testing and finalizing these platforms so that they adhere to Russian laws. This is all part of the efforts by the Bank of Russia which begun studies of Bitcoin’s blockchain technology.
The bank wants to know and use blockchain technology in collaboration with Qiwi to build national digital currency system. Qiwi which was planning on building a privately-run crypto-currency for the Russian market when met with a very negative response by the Russian Ombudsman, Pavel Medvedev decided to work the government.
In a public statement Qiwi informed media that BitRuble will be based on either the Blockchain or Bitshares technology so that it can reduce the cost of existing processing services. Qiwi is the first company trying to launch a virtual currency in Russia despite the fact that the country has been quite hostile to the disruptive financial technology.
Bitcoin Faces Huge Challenges in Russia
Though the global volume of digital money is about $3.8 billion, the regulators in Russia have been against the disruptive technology for quite some time as according to them these can be used to finance terrorism and launder money. In fact, the president of the country Vladimir Putin calls the cryptocurrencies as the CIA Project and despises them hugely.
The digital currencies are not just despised by the regulators in Russia but in October 2014, the country’s Ministry of Finance published a bill that introduced fines for using or distributing virtual currency. In consequence, many companies that had intended to use Bitcoins renounced such plans so that they can avoid any trouble.
However, the creation of BitRuble is not surprising at all because it will be very much a creation from Russian government in pattern of Ecuador which created an EMS, or Electronic Money System. Interestingly, the EMS is far from being an encrypted crypto-currency. Now, the question is, will the BitRuble be a cryptocurrency?
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