Ewald Nowotny, current president and governor of the National Bank of Austria and a member of the European Central Bank’s governing council isn’t keen on seeing bitcoin as a currency.
In an interview with regional newspaper Kleine Zeitung, the central banker was asked about Japan’s recognition of bitcoin as a legal method of payment. In stating his reservations about Japan’s early embrace of bitcoin, Nowotny stated:
Bitcoin is not a currency. It lacks the one thing required of a good currency – stability. Bitcoin is a speculative object.
It has been volatile waters for bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies lately, particularly in recent weeks during amid fears of hard fork that would split the bitcoin blockchain to effectively create two different coins. However, prices are back on the rise again following a consensus among bitcoin miners and businesses who are signaling for the activation of the Bitcoin Improvement Proposal (BIP) 91, ultimately leading to the code optimization known as SegWit.
For his part, Nowotny isn’t completely against the global, state-averse, decentralized cryptocurrency. “We (the central bank) do not prohibit it,” the central bank official stated while adding that investors should be aware of what they’re getting into when adopting cryptocurrencies.
“In the past, there have always been cases where such things have burst and that can have negative psychological effects,” Nowotny claimed. “This is the danger we see- but I would not overrate it either.”
Nowotny’s comments come at a time when the purchase of digital currencies including bitcoin, ether, litecoin, dash and more are now possible at over 1,800 post offices across Austria following a partnership between Vienna-based bitcoin startup Bitpanda and Austria’s leading postal services provider, Austrian Post.
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Last modified: May 21, 2020 9:39 AM UTC