The move could open up new opportunities for the major lender to ease the effects of Western sanctions.
Russia’s central bank said on Thursday it has granted major lender Sberbank a license to issue and exchange digital financial assets, a move that could open up new opportunities for the bank. seeking to lessen the impact of Western sanctions.
Russian blockchain platform Atomyze in early February became the first company to get the green light to legally exchange digital assets in a country where the central bank has long voiced skepticism about money. electronically, in favor of a complete ban on trading and mining.
Sberbank, which says it is working to launch its own cryptocurrency, is already listed on the central bank’s register, along with the Lighthouse financial ecosystem, which allows the two companies to issue assets digitally and exchange them on their platform.
Sberbank said it will use blockchain technology to ensure the safety of digital transactions and will allow companies to issue their own digital assets, buy those issued in the system system of Sberbank and perform other transactions.
Sberbank CEO German Gref at the end of 2020 said the bank is working with JP Morgan to prepare its own cryptocurrency, called Sbercoin, but it has not yet launched.
A financial market source, speaking before the Ukraine crisis unfolded, told Reuters news agency in February that Sberbank was actively preparing to launch Sbercoin.
Unprecedented Western sanctions have hit the heart of Russia’s financial system as events in Ukraine and Sberbank were among the companies targeted. It is unclear how sanctions and the crisis might affect the launch of Sbercoin or Sberbank’s partnership with JP Morgan.
Sberbank did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Sbercoin.
Concerned that cryptocurrencies could threaten financial stability, the welfare of the people and the sovereignty of Russia’s monetary policy, the central bank has come into conflict with the Ministry of Finance, which wants to regulate the industry. Cryptocurrencies in Russia.