Head of IBA proposes a special council for regulating crypto

Head of IBA proposes a special council for regulating crypto banner image

In a press conference last November 2, the head of the Iran Blockchain Association (IBA) Abbas Ashtiani said that there is a need for an independent council that regulates cryptocurrencies in the country. He told the press that ‘we need a special council from state bodies and private enterprise to craft regulations for cryptocurrencies. The CBI or the Security and Exchange Organization are not qualified [enough] to set rules for cryptos given the multidimensionality of the issue’ as reported by Iran-based newspaper the Financial Tribune.

In Iran, mining Bitcoin (BTC) is legal and all miners are tasked to get a license to operate from the nation’s Ministry of Industries, Mining and Trade. The Ministry has issued 30 crypto mining units according to a report by the Financial Tribune last June 23. On another hand, miners are asked to pay for their respective electricity bills depending on their power export tariffs.

However, using cryptocurrencies as a form of payment in the country is not allowed. Although there are some banks and licensed money changers that use this digital currency, the clear regulations regarding this are not sufficient enough. As a result, there are still a number of illegal activities related to crypto that arose such as underground mining and money laundering, according to Ashtiani.

He noted that the government’s inactions are a big cause for concern, adding that ‘we have still not been able to hold a meeting with the policy and decision makers’. Moreover, he voiced out how the former government’s plans were not fulfilled in the current administration. He then commented that the newly elected President Ebrahim Raisi seems to have no concrete plans relating to cryptocurrency regulations.

When asked about his opinion about the government’s worries with mining and trading in crypto, Ashtiani said ‘we understand policymakers’ concerns and assure them that their reservations can and will be addressed’. He then announced that they are ready to ‘help set rules that can help ensure a positive impact of cryptos on the economy while minimizing criminality’.

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