Ukraine’s National Bank has warned against the associated risks that come with digital currencies such as bitcoin.
A statement from the bank dated 1st October, first reported by Ukrainian news site Finance.ua, said it should not be held liable for any losses incurred by consumers using digital currencies to settle transactions.
Instead, it urged banks, consumers and payment organisations to use approved payment systems that guarantee consumer protection.
Touching on the lack of an international virtual currency regulatory framework, a loosely translated version of the statement reads:
“The National Bank of Ukraine will continue to study the experience of introducing innovative products to market payments and track policies of central banks and government agencies of other countries in order to settle the issue of virtual currencies in an European and global context.”
The statement also said that the bank was closely monitoring the development and use of new payments services. Although it believes that new participants should have an equal opportunity to enter the market, the bank noted that ensuring the security of payments was a priority.
A ‘considered view’
Alexander Shelkovnikov, a founding member of Ukraine’s Bitcoin Foundation, told CoinDesk that the central bank’s recent recommendation was a more considered view than what it offered last year.
“We see this statement as a step which justifies our existing collaboration with the Ukraine Central Bank in working out a considered regulatory position related to crypto currencies and market participants. Central Bank has not officially released any regulation towards cryptocurrencies to date and has only been recommending to treat these with care and consider all the associated risks.”
The news comes after reports in March this year that the Ukranian government was planning to block bitcoin accounts belonging to separatists operating in the East of the country.
CoinDesk contacted Ukraine’s National Bank but no reply had been received at press time.
Ukraine National Bank image via Shutterstock.