Iranians Spend $2.5 Billion On Cryptocurrency Investments
Millions invested amid ban
The ban placed on cryptocurrency trading in Iran seems to have no effect on crypto investors in the country. Since the ban, investors have maneuvered through it and invested over $2.5 billion overseas.
According to the economic committee of Iran’s parliamentary chair Mr. Mohammad Reza Pourebrahimi, Iran has a small number of crypto investors but are highly interested in purchasing virtual currencies. Speaking to journalists from Ibena.ir news agency, Mr. Pourebrahimi said;
“Iran has very few crypto enthusiasts who have managed to send out over $2.5 billion for investment.”
Of the $2.5 billion sent out, $30 billion was sent out in the course of a few months ending in March. One wonders how the cash is being sent out yet there is a ban in place. According to Mr. Pourebrahimi, Iran’s financial institutions do not support international transfers so investors found other means of sending cash. Some of them use worldwide vacationers to get cash out while others use exchange dealers.
Reasons for crypto ban
The Iranian Central Bank placed a ban on crypto last month prohibiting local banks and financial institutions from carrying out any crypto transactions. In its defense however, the CBI banned crypto citing money laundering claims associated with virtual currencies. The ban comes into effect amidst debate over how digital currency can be regulated. Although the ban is in place, local financial institutions have gone against it. On top of it is Iran’s ICT ministry led by Mr. Mohammad-Javad Azari Jahromi. Mr. Azari Jahromi claims his ministry has developed a trial virtual currency. Mr. Azari Jahromi believes the ban doesn’t prohibit any Iranian from developing a local virtual currency. Sanctions place against Iran can be circumvented using cryptocurrency.
According to Azari Jahromi, cryptocurrency is not under any regulatory body acting as a watchdog around the world which gives Iran a chance to do business with other countries.The absence of an American Regulatory body regulating worldwide digital currencies means Iran will be able to bypass all sanctions against it thus allowing them to do business with any willing country. While the ICT Minister says they have developed a local virtual currency, Mr. Pourebrahimi refutes any claims of its development.