Sberbank CEO – State Won’t Give Up its Central Role & Permit Cryptos
Crypto currency and blockchain enthusiasts would be regularly hearing stories about the initiatives taken by various governments to implement the disruptive technology to improve efficiency.
However, there is a contrarian view to that news and that is from the head of a government backed financial institution. Russia state owned Sberbank’s CEO Herman Gref is of the opinion that many governments won’t easily allow the transition from centralized models to decentralized systems such as blockchain technology and they would prevent decentralized cryptocurrencies to flourish within the next 10 years.
Gref has further stated that governments are still not willing to part with centralized currencies and thus will not allow decentralized crypto currencies attain mass adoption.
“[The future] of cryptocurrencies is not clear so far as the state will not give up its central role, won’t allow [decentralized] cryptocurrencies. Though this might be the proper model – as for me, I’m for a distributed model, including in money supply. But it seems like that is not in the cards for the next — well, let’s be optimistic – ten years.”
Despite these issues, Gref is optimistic about blockchain technology, which powers cryptocurencies. He believes that blockchain technology would have advanced enough for adoption in a time span of between 3 and 5 years.
“The technology [blockchain] isn’t ready right now. When will it be ready? In my view, in 3-5 years […] [Blockchain’s] potential is huge. The philosophy embodied in it could drastically change approaches in many areas. Improving this technology could bring huge value both to business and society.”
Sberbank’s CEO also inspired governments to look for a middle ground between nullifying deceitful actions and “killing” cryptocurrencies. He further said a prohibition on crypto could hurt lots of companies that build distributed ledger technologies (DLT) such as blockchain.
Gref uttered this view while taking part in finance innovation gathering Finnopolis that took place in the South Russian city of Sochi. The gathering was also saw the participating by the head of Russia’s central bank, Elvira Nabiullina, who communicated clear cynicism towards cryptocurrencies, comparing attraction in them to a “fever” that had at last decreased.
To a certain extent, Sberbank’s CEO accepted Nabiullina’s opinion that crypto “hype” has ended. In general, Gref’s remarks were in line with his earlier communicated positions on crypto and blockchain.
Sberbank has also regularly nourished blockchain-based technologies and normally shown attention in cryptocurrencies. In June, Sberbank and one larger Russian bank, Alfa-Bank, started testing crypto investment choices for retail investors within the central bank’s “regulatory sandbox.”
Earlier this month, Sberbank entered into a partnership deal with state-owned power giant Rosseti to seek advice from the corporation on blockchain employment.