Russia’s two biggest banks Sberbank and VTB are not keen on going into the cryptocurrency market in the near future as their CEOs believe that crypto is either too risky or fake money.
Sberbank CEO Hermann Greif said that cryptocurrencies like bitcoin (B T c) is probably the riskiest type of investment along with the equity market. In an interview on Thursday with local TV channel NTV, Gref Claimed That a banking deposit is the best investment option as it is associated with the least amount of risk in spite of low returns:
“A banking deposit is definitely the most reliable investment instrument. 100% reliability but unfortunately not a lot of profitability.”
Andrey Kostin, CEO of Russia’s second largest bank VTB, went even further, arguing that crypto is “fake money”. In an interview Friday with Bloomberg, Kostin said:
“We don’t like bitcoin. We think it’s like making fake money. Somebody is sitting somewhere like the Middle Ages and mining and then using them.”
Kostin expressed confidence that central bank digital currencies would displace crypto, adding that private banks were initially “a little worried” about giving the Bank of Russia all power over money.
“Banks were a little concerned that central banks would take their business, but I think we have found a solution that in fact the customers will stay with the banks while the cryptocurrency will be controlled and issued by a central bank,” he said.
It is perhaps not surprising that the aforementioned CEO is not endorsing private digital currencies, as the Russian government – by no means a major proponent of cryptocurrencies itself – owns major controlling stakes in both Sberbank and VTB.
Yesterday, Oliver Hughes, CEO of private digital bank Tinkoff, announced that the Bank of Russia Won’t let it launch crypto services Despite customer demand.