9 Oct, 2019

Iranian Students Turn to Cryptocurrencies to Navigate Through US Sanctions

he United States of America has been imposing sanctions on numerous countries such as Venezuela, North Korea, Iran, among others. Most of the named countries are looking at cryptocurrencies as an alternative, in a bid to survive the sanctions.

Now, it turns out, Iranian students are bearing the brunt of the sanctions. Due to the sustained sanctions, the country has cut rest of the world off from oil, shipping, and gas market. Apart from that exchanges such as Bittrex and Binance have also dropped the country from the list of their supported countries. Iranian students are being denied from using banking services, due to the sanctions.

Unfortunately, due to the denial of banking services, many students have not been able to pay their tuition fees. As an alternative, they have been asked to go to Iran and pay the tuition fees or else face expulsion. A news portal, Altcoin Era quoted an associate professor, Mai Sato, as saying that the prices of air tickets may also go up. Sato said, “Even if the funds for the flight and fees can be raised, requiring a student to transport large amounts of cash within and from a country classified by the foreign office as a high-risk country, exposes the university to justifiable criticism.”

Given that, the alternative to the sanctions, is tantamount to carrying lots of fiat currency, the students are turning to cryptocurrencies.

Earlier, Crypto-News India had reported on the possibility of Iran adopting cryptocurrencies, after it was removed from the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) network.

At the time, economist and Kingston University professor Steve Keen, heavily criticized the U.S. government for isolating the central bank of a sovereign nation from the global financial system. He said, “The US has gone rogue, and cannot be allowed to dictate economic or political policy to the rest of the world. The sooner the rest of the world develops an alternate payments system – possibly working through SWIFT, but using a basket of currencies as the basis for a supra-national unit of exchange – the better. The USA is big enough to bully what should be an impartial means for monetary transactions between countries. This should not be possible.”