The National Bank of Kazakhstan is preparing “a number of options” for the use of blockchain technology this year, it has emerged.
Crypto’s ‘Positive Impact’ on Kazakhstan
Speaking to local news publication Tengrinews following a press conference about the plans, Daniyar Akishev, head of the financial regulator, stated concrete information would likely be available “closer to autumn.” He said:
We expect to formalize […] a number of projects in which we are considering the possibility of using the Blockchain system on the stock market or in some payment-related areas.
In March, ex-head of the National Bank Gregory Marchenko suggested that cryptocurrency “would have a positive impact on the monetary policy of the country” in wake of the sharp decrease in value of its national currency, the Tenge, and associated lack of investor and consumer confidence.
Akishev stated this week that the National Bank has set up a “work group,” which is “studying” the impact of cryptocurrency and associated companies working with “money substitutes” on the financial markets.
“This is the reality which we will face in the near future, and to ignore it is impossible,” he said. “…Accordingly, any adjustments of our plans for the development of the financial sector may also be based on these findings.”
Race to Regulate
Akishev also noted that a bill is currently going through the Kazakh parliament related to “payments and payment systems.” The bill is designed, he explained, to allow the regulator “leverage to monitor the situation and if necessary to regulate this sector as quickly as possible.”
“We have dozens of areas in which payments occur which do not currently fall under the regulatory capacities of the National Bank, hence the reason we are working on this project,” he added.
The seemingly regulation-heavy stance of the National Bank may appear to be a familiar story, yet it is uncertain what form any regulation of Bitcoin itself will take in the absence of concrete findings or statements from any party.
In contrast, neighboring Russia is currently awaiting the findings of its own work group related to the possible introduction of the country’s own cryptocurrency and blockchain technology.
Deputy Director of the Federal Monitoring Service, Pavel Livadny, has already said any Russian national crypto would be tightly regulated, and that there would likely be “financial institutions, which will be entrusted with the emission cryptocurrency.”
It also appears that Bitcoin, in the event of the emergence of this national currency, would be formally banned outright throughout the country.
What do you think about Kazakhstan’s approach to cryptocurrency regulation? Let us know in the comments below.
Images courtesy of undp.org, matritca.kz, ortcom.kz