Central Bank of Iran Doesn’t Recognize Bitcoin As Official Currency

News | February 22, 2018 By:

The Central Bank of Iran has denied ever recognizing bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as official currency, along with the idea that it was actively facilitating crypto transactions.

In October of last year, it was reported that the government of Iran was conducting studies into how to prepare an infrastructure to use bitcoin within the country. At the time, the plan was to adopt bitcoin to completely bypass economic sanctions levied against the country, while also allowing citizens to conduct international trades otherwise not possible.

In a recent statement, the central bank not only called the report “baseless,” but also warned Iranian citizens about the high risks of making investments in the potentially volatile market, saying that there’s a chance they “may lose their financial assets.”

“The wild fluctuations of the digital currencies along with competitive business activities underway via network marketing and pyramid scheme have made the market of these currencies highly unreliable and risky,” the central bank said.

The central bank said it is cooperating with other institutions to develop a new mechanism to control and prevent cryptocurrencies in the country.

While the government of Iran has changed its mind in adopting bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, it is reportedly working to develop its own.

On Wednesday, Iran’s Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Minister Mohammad-Javad Azari Jahromi announced that the government is actively working on the creation of their own, state-issued cryptocurrency,  possibly allowing the country, which is largely excluded from major international payment networks, to circumvent financial blockades.

Iran would not be the first country to develop its own cryptocurrency as a way of bypassing international sanctions. Earlier this week, Venezuela launched its oil-backed cryptocurrency Petro, raising $735 million in the first day of its pre-sale.