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Russia ‘to replace US dollar with BITCOIN’ to get round US sanctions

RUSSIA is poised to hit back at United States #sanctions by replacing the dollar with bitcoin as a reserve currency, according to a report.

Vladislav Ginko, an #economist at the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, claims #Russia is braced to invest in the leading cryptocurrency after the rouble was left crippled by US sanctions. #Russia was slapped with fresh restrictions in December, with the US expanding a blacklist of #individuals allegedly involved in a Kremlin-backed campaign to meddle with the 2016 US presidential #election. The latest sanctions targeted 15 members of a Russian military intelligence service and four #entities involved in the alleged election interference, the hacking of the World Anti-Doping Agency and other “malign #activities” around the world, the Treasury said. Mr Ginko was quoted in The Daily Telegraph as saying: “The Russian #government is about to make a step to start diversifying financial reserves into Bitcoin since #Russia is forced by US sanctions to dump US Treasury bonds and take back US dollars.

“These sanctions and the will to adopt #modern financial technologies lead Russia to the way of investing its reserves into Bitcoin.”

Bitcoin, which was first released as open-sourced #software in January 2009, is considered the first decentralised #cryptocurrency. Since then, over 4,000 alternative coin variants of Bitcoin have been created.

Russia is thought to have seen a surge in the original #cryptocurrency, with Mr #Ginko suggesting bitcoin and other digital currencies account for 8 percent of gross domestic #product (GDP) in Russia.

russian president vladimir putin

Russia news: Russia is reportedly set to invest in# bitcoin (Image: GETTY)

The Russian #government is about to make a step to start diversifying financial reserves into Bitcoin

#Vladislav #Ginko

The Daily Telegraph quote The Central Bank of #Russia as saying in a statement that it “publishes information on the foreign #assets management with a six-month lag”.

The bank is yet to publish any official #plans.

Mati Greenspan, senior market #analyst at trading platform eToro, claimed there is “definitely an interest from the [Russian] #government to do this”.

A report by The Central #Bank of Russia published this month revealed how $101billion in US holdings had been dumped from its reserves as it moves away from the #currency in the wake of the latest sanctions.

In its place, Russia is shifting into being euros and the #Chinese #yuan, with $44billion being moved into each currency, according to Bloomberg.

Another $21 billion was invested in the #Japanese #yen.

bitcoin

Bitcoin was first released as open-sourced #software in January 2009 (Image: GETTY)

Benn Steil, director of international economics at the #Council on Foreign Relations in New York, said: “Russia is making a strategic shift in its reserves #towards holding fewer dollars and more assets in other currencies.”

Russian President Vladimir Putin took an angry #stance at the dollar last November, claiming: “We aren’t ditching the dollar, the dollar is #ditching us.”

He continued: “The instability of dollar #payments is creating a desire for many global economies to find alternative reserve currencies and create #settlement systems independent of the dollar.

“We’re not the only ones doing it, believe me.”

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