Crimea, a disputed territory between Ukraine and Russia, is heading towards the creation of an international center for blockchain technology. The authorities of the Crimean peninsula consider blockchain technology a solution for states subject to international sanctions. The Crimea was annexed by the Russian Federation in 2014 following a coup in Ukraine. Most international governments, however, continue to consider Crimea as an integral part of Ukraine.
Crimea annexed to Russia finds niche of Crypto: evasion of US sanctions
Roman Kulachenko, president of the Republic of Crimea Association of Blockchain Technologies Investment, told the Russian news agency TASS that the public institution proposed the creation of a university or courses for promote knowledge of blockchain technology in the peninsula.
"[It is proposed] create a university or courses for blockchain specialists, including for authorities. There are a number of states that, like Crimea, are under sanctions – for example, South Ossetia and Abkhazia. We have the same problems and the center will allow us to combine efforts and solve the problem ".
Some countries have considered or already started using cryptocurrencies as a tactic to circumvent international sanctions against them. Iran, for example, has recently been ousted by the SWIFT financial banking system as part of US-led sanctions. Without the SWIFT system, its economy will face greater difficulties in resolving its international agreements. In response, the Iranian authorities have accelerated the development of their national digital currency supported by the state.
Iran dominated by the penalty is a typical target country, according to Kulachenko's description. The Islamic republic could eventually send a number of IT experts to study the blockchain in the Crimea once the proposed university becomes a reality. Russia, which is also subject to international sanctions after the annexation of Crimea in 2014, has also been in talks for the creation of cryptocurrencies in order to evade sanctions. The plans of Russia and Iran are not secret. An Iranian MP explicitly stated that cryptocurrencies should be used to circumvent the hypothesis of returning economic sanctions from the United States.
North Korea also made headlines to increase the use of cryptocurrencies to circumvent US economic sanctions. The pariah country intends to launch its digital currency to facilitate the opening of online accounts in the guise of a non-antagonist nation. The method would include the use of anonymous communications to hide the positions and the use of the user on the Internet. Independent financial analysts believe the DPRK can create its own portfolio services so that they can transfer funds to European accounts to reach European exchanges that have relations with US banks.
Economic sanctions are increasingly being used to promote the full range of US foreign policy objectives. The universities or courses offered by the Crimean blockchain association will probably find a great demand from the targeted nations.