Head of Russia’s Top Bank: the State Will Keep ‘Centralized Role’ in Money Emission

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The CEO of Russia’s largest state bank Sberbank, Herman Gref said he could not yet foresee governments “yielding their centralized role” in fiat currency creation as part of his comments on cryptocurrency.

Speaking to reporters during the Astana Finance Days international conference in the Kazakhstan capital July 4, Sberbank’s Herman Gref repeated the comments he has made “many times” about cryptoassets’ future role in the economy.

“Do I see a prospect of global use of cryptocurrencies as an alternative to fiat money? I don’t see it and I said it many times,” he said.

“I don’t think that the state is ready to yield its centralized role in emission of fiat currency to some other decentralized institutions.”

Gref’s words broadly reflect the ongoing metamorphosis of cryptocurrency’s regulatory status within Russia. This week sees the deadline for new legislation becoming law which cements cryptocurrency as a separate class of asset devoid of the status of legal tender.

Sberbank has nonetheless begun increasing its crypto interaction in the run-up to the new regulated era, revealing its plans to launch a crypto-based investment fund last month.

A week prior, Gref had nonetheless come out bearish, telling local news outlet Kommersant he “wouldn’t recommend [buying cryptocurrency] to anyone who does not like playing at a casino.”

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