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The senior adviser at Saudi Arabias’s central bank, Abdulmalik Al-Sheikh, stated that the regulator does not believe that the cryptocurrency market is mature enough to be regulated yet. Before the central bank will determine any regulation on Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs), Al-Sheikh commented in an interview with CNBC that the bank will observe the general situation.

“Cryptocurrency is still at its infancy, its pilots, trials, here and there. I don’t think that there is something strong where we need to jump into it currently,” commented the senior advisor at the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency at the Fintech Abu Dhabi event.

Saudi Central Bank position on cryptocurrencies

Al-Sheikh has also said that other central banks are analysing the situation regarding the impact of cryptocurrencies on the economy. A similar statement has been made by Demian Reidel, Vice-President Second of the Argentinian Central Bank. Mr. Reidel said that “it is for sure that there will be more cryptocurrencies, much more than the ones we know today, and some of them will be issued by central banks from other countries”.

About the situation of the ICOs, Al-Sheikh declared that the regulator is taking time to analyse how they will approach to them. ICOs are a way, that start-ups use, to raise funds while issuing a virtual currency. This method of fundraising arrived at $2.3 billion dollars this year and is expected to grow even more the next year. Institutional investors are starting to invest in different ICOs and cryptocurrencies.

“For us it’s still not something that is traded and accepted globally, it’s something that is done and traded in different markets. As I mentioned before we are observing that and monitoring what’s happening and try to measure the risks associated.”, Al-Sheikh asserted for CNBC.

What it is curious is that, the same day, CNBC reported that the Saudi Arabian Prince Alwaleed bin Talal mentioned that Bitcoin is destined to implode in the future. “Bitcoin does not make sense. It is not regulated and it’s not under control or supervision of a central bank. I don’t believe in this whole thing at all. I think its going to implode.”

These says are similar to the ones that Jamie Dimon expressed weeks ago. He said that Bitcoin “is a fraud” and it will eventually blow up.

Regulations and the situation of ICOs around the world

At the moment, different countries are taking diverse approaches regarding the same topic. ICOs have been regulated in South Korea and China. However, Japan recognised Bitcoin as a means of payment. In the UK the regulation is really soft and in Estonia, the government wanted to issue a cryptocurrency via an ICO,

Russia is one of the most important countries that is trying to issue its own cryptocurrency, the CryptoRuble. Some days ago, Moscow announced that it wants to issue a city currency named Moscowcoin. After comments regarding restrictions on ICOs, Igor Shuvalov, Russia’s First Deputy Minister, promised that ICOs in Russia will not die because of regulations.

Vladimir Putin backed the technology involved in cryptocurrencies, the Blockchain. Some time ago, Putin met Vitalik Buterin, the founder of Ethereum, one of the largest cryptocurrencies in the world.

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