Days after President Trump slammed bitcoin and the very idea of crypto, geopolitical foe Iran revealed that it is ready to unveil its own gold-backed cryptocurrency.
Gold held in reserve by the Middle East country’s central bank will back the value of tokens on the blockchain of Iran’s new central bank “cryptocurrency” – which might be a generous term. The crypto will be mined by a small consortium of private Iranian tech companies.
According to the Tehran-based news agency’s English language website, the Central Bank of Iran (CBI) has given permission for the new crypto to be unveiled. Shahab Javanmardi, CEO of FANAP – an Iranian information and communications technology (ICT) firm – revealed:
“The Iranian cryptocurrency is backed by gold but its function is similar to foreign rivals. The domestically encrypted money is to ease optimal use of Iranian banks’ frozen resources.”
Announcement of Iran’s new state cryptocurrency came days after the CBI banned all private cryptocurrencies and crypto-businesses in the country, Mehr News notes.
The legal and regulatory status of bitcoin in Iran is, however, far from clear. Different authorities in varying agencies have issued contradictory statements. They seem as perplexed and uncertain of what to do about cryptocurrency as financial authorities in the United States.
The FANAP CEO urged the government to continue the clamp down on bitcoin in Iran.