Sberbank Yes VTB, the two largest banks in Russia, are not ready to enter the cryptocurrency market in the near future, as the CEOs believe that cryptocurrencies are too risky or fake money.
The CEO of Sberbank, Herman Gref explained that cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin (BTC) are probably the riskiest form of investment alongside the stock market. In an interview with local television station NTV on Thursday, Gref stated that A bank deposit is the best investment option, as it is associated with the lowest risk despite the low return:
“A bank deposit is undoubtedly the most reliable investment vehicle. 100% reliability, but unfortunately not very profitable.”
Andrei Kostin, the CEO of VTB (the second largest bank in Russia) went even further, arguing that cryptocurrencies were “fake money”. In a Friday interview with Bloomberg, Kostin He said:
“We don’t like Bitcoin. We think it’s like making fake money. Somebody sits somewhere like in the Middle Ages continuously mining and then using it.”
Kostin expressed his confidence that digital currencies issued by central banks will displace cryptocurrencies. Private banks were initially “a little apprehensive” about giving the Bank of Russia complete power over money.
“The banks were a bit worried that the central bank would take their business away from them, but I think we found the solution to keep customers in the banks while the cryptocurrency is controlled and issued by a central bank.” He said.
It is nothing new that the aforementioned CEOs don’t endorse private digital currencies as the Russian government (which isn’t a huge proponent of cryptocurrencies) has significant controlling stakes in Sberbank and VTB.
Yesterday, Oliver Hughes, the CEO of the private digital bank Tinkoff, announced that the Bank of Russia is not allowing him to introduce cryptocurrency services despite high customer demand.