Iran to hold conference on electronic banking amid U.S. sanctions

Source: Xinhua| 2019-01-23 18:29:20|Editor: xuxin
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TEHRAN, Jan. 23 (Xinhua) -- Iran plans to hold an electronic banking conference later this month seeking means to possibly dodge the existing U.S. sanctions on its monetary and banking system.

The eighth annual conference on "Electronic Banking and Payment Systems" is slated for Jan. 29-30, Eghtesad online news website reported on Wednesday.

Amid the new round of U.S. sanctions, the authorities in Tehran seek to circumvent the "hostile" economic restrictions with the help of blockchain and other financial and monetary technologies, the report said.

Ali Divandari, head of the Monetary and Banking Research Institute, acknowledged that blockchain and other similar technologies have the potential to resist sanctions as they operate mainly out of the normal jurisdiction of central banks and financial regulators in many countries.

"This is true that blockchain functions independently from central banks. Therefore (if launched in Iran) it couldn't be a target for U.S. sanctions," Divandari was quoted as saying.

"Blockchain Revolution" has been selected as the main theme of the conference, according to the report.

However, Divandari expressed doubts that the launch of blockchain in Iran will hit the target. "Blockchain simply lacks the ability and capability to dodge sanctions. Suggestions like these are immature and farfetched," he pointed out.

"Even if we make the use of technology to replace traditional financial instruments, the necessary infrastructure may not be available in countries with which we have commercial and financial interaction," he added.

Blockchain is a system in which records or data are distributed in multiple computers at the same time. It is constantly growing as new sets of data or blocks are added to it.

Since May 2018, when U.S. President Donald Trump pulled his country out of the 2015 Iranian nuclear agreement and later reimposed sanctions on Iran's banking sectors as well as its oil sales, Iran has been working on a digital currency as a solution to the impact of sanctions.