Iran May Become First Country to Use Bitcoin Extensively
Iran might become the first country to start using bitcoin at the larger level. US Ambassador Richard Grenell recently revealed that they are worried about Iran’s plans to withdraw 300 million Euros in cash held in German Banks. Grenell expressed the US Government’s concern through the following statement
We encourage the highest levels of the German government to intervene and stop the plan.
Since 2015, when the United States withdrew from the Nuclear Agreement, Iran has been experiencing tension with the superpower. This amplified since Trump’s Presidency. Because of this increasing tension and the uncertainty associated with their fiat, a lot of Iranian citizens have been turning to Bitcoin because of its open network and borderless nature.
The Bitcoin network lacks a central authority and therefore it doesn’t care about who you are or who you are doing transactions with. Furthermore, it is easy to store, unlike gold and other forms of fiat currency as well. Bitcoin has a private key that you are completely in control of, providing security and safety as well.
According to Weiss Cryptocurrency Rating analyst Juan Villaverde, it is because of these reasons, cryptocurrency is becoming more and more attractive. He explains his view through the following statement.
In the past, when corrupt governments devalued their local currency or seized assets from citizens, investors ran to the US dollar or gold. […] Today, many are moving into cryptocurrencies, where their money sits on a global distributed ledger that no central bank or government can touch.
However, the people of Iran not only have to fight against the U.S. sanctions but also their own government’s perception of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. The country’s government has not been too fond of Bitcoin and in April it banned Iran’s banks from dealing with domestic Bitcoin exchanges. However, Mati Greenspan, the senior market analyst at eToro believes that cryptocurrencies can be the winners in periods of the government crackdown.He said,
A crackdown in Iran] would create a secondary market for crypto assets within the economy, which—normally speaking—would have a very high markup compared to the asset’s price elsewhere in the world …So, there will be places where they’ll be able to trade peer-to-peer. They don’t need an exchange. Obviously, it’s a lot easier if you have a local exchange that accepts credit cards or bank transfers, but if that infrastructure’s not there, they can still trade it peer-to-peer.
Some of the country’s officials have also discussed the possibility of cryptocurrency replacing international transaction systems like SWIFT. Iran is likely to realize that bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are a way for borderless transactions that are free from control, especially U.S. Sanctions. As a result, it might become the first country in the world to use Bitcoin on a large scale.
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