The Central Bank of Iran has banned the country’s banks from interacting with companies operating in the cryptocurrency sector, citing the risks of money laundering.
The Supreme Council of the CBI, among other things responsible for combating money laundering and capital outflows, issued a circular letter that prohibited banks and financial institutions from conducting transactions related to the purchase, sale or promotion of cryptocurrencies, the Islamic News Agency reported.
In a letter, the CBI states that cryptocurrencies “provide an opportunity for money laundering, support for terrorism and the exchange of funds by intruders,” the official Iranian media writes.
“Banks and credit institutions, as well as currency exchanges, should avoid buying or selling these currencies or participating in any activities related to their promotion,” Reuters cites an extract from the letter of the CBI.
Restrictions on trade in cryptocurrencies were imposed after Iran officially began to establish exchange rates in its market in the struggle for stability of the local currency of Iranian rial. The central bank has also limited the amount of foreign currency that a citizen of a country can keep, up to €10,000 or $12,250.
The ban was introduced against the backdrop of reaching a historical low in mid-April and fears about the negative impact on the economy of American sanctions.
In 2012, Iran refused to be virtually separated from the global banking system after it was removed from the global SWIFT payment structure. The restriction was lifted only in 2016.
Earlier it became known that the Iranian authorities are considering the possibility of blocking Telegram because of the company’s ICO.