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Russian Central Bank’s official comments on ICO investment potential

The bank's first deputy chairman says the use tokens issued at the ICO for attracting finances has a huge investment potential

MOSCOW, November 14. /TASS/. The use tokens issued at the ICO (Initial Coin Offering) for attracting finances has a huge investment potential, which is why Russia’s Central Bank will support the development of this institution, the regulator’s First Deputy Chairman Sergei Shvetsov said Tuesday.

"Our country has a tremendous potential of innovations, our students, young people and entrepreneurs have the edge over any country in the world from the viewpoint of ideas, and amid the lack of classical institutions of startups support, ICO development has a huge potential to finance those ideas," he said.

Though this is an obviously challenging task, Shvetsov is optimistic: "Hopefully, ICO will take a rightful place on Russia’s financial market," he said.

In September, a work group was formed within the State Duma’s (lower house of parliament) Financial Market Committee to develop proposals on legalization of cryptocurrencies in Russia.

Chairman of Russia’s Central Bank Elvira Nabiullina has repeatedly stressed that the stance of the regulator in relation to cryptocurrencies is unchanged, as it does not support their legalization as a legitimate payment facility, but sees the prospects for the blockchain technology. She also said that cryptocurrencies would not be admitted to the Russian market being ‘quasi-money’.

President Putin said in October that the use of cryptocurrencies carries serious risks, being an opportunity for laundering criminal capitals, evading taxes and financing terrorism, for spreading fraudulent schemes, where citizens may become victims. However, he called for taking the advantages provided by new technology solutions in the banking sector.