Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko has recently proposed introducing a new digital currency in the country as part of efforts to circumvent the economic sanctions imposed by the West. The proposed cryptocurrency, dubbed “BelarusCoin”, would be pegged to the Belarusian ruble. As with any cryptocurrency, it would be powered by blockchain technology and would be pegged to the ruble, ensuring that citizens of Belarus are not subjected to the risks associated with other digital currencies. According to reports, the government is in negotiations with blockchain and artificial intelligence startups to develop the new currency.
Notably, the use of cryptocurrency and blockchain technology for evading sanctions has been a recurring theme for the Lukashenko government. Previously, the government has attempted to create a system for bypassing US and EU sanctions by using cryptocurrency. For instance, in 2018, the country had plans to develop a national blockchain-based platform to enable the trading of oil and gas between Belarus and other countries.
The proposed BelarusCoin is certainly a step towards evading the sanctions imposed on Belarus, as well as providing financial freedom to its citizens. However, it is also important to consider the potential risks associated with this plan. It would be difficult to control and monitor a cryptocurrency like BelarusCoin, and it is possible that it could be used to fund illegal activities. Moreover, its value would be dependent on the Belarusian ruble, which could undermine the credibility of the currency. Finally, the long-term implications of a state-issued cryptocurrency are still unclear, and some experts are worried it could lead to a further erosion of trust in state-issued currency.