New Malta Bankers Association Chief Has Few Problems WIth Crypto Space

June 19, 2018

Malta Bankers Association chairperson essentially gives crypto space the thumbs up in a recent interview.

We’ve been reporting to you about how some observers have recently come out squarely against the crypto space. Whether it’s the opinion that Blockchain will become obsolete, or that cryptos don’t stand a chance against fiat money, we’ve heard quite a range of opinions.

However, there is one key player in the finance space who would beg to differ with these viewpoints. That’s Marcel Cassar, the newly appointed chairperson of the Malta Bankers Association (MBA).

In a recent interview, he said that Blockchain was a “banker’s dream” and that cryptos are “here to stay.”

Here, we’ll go over some of the points he made about the space during his interview with local news outlet The Malta Independent.

Banking industry vs. digital world

In saying that Blockchain sounds like a “banker’s dream,” Cassar pointed specifically to it having records of all transactions, documents and contracts that are always authentic and reliable.

We reported on yesterday about the Bank of International Settlements shooting down cryptos in a scathing report. We noted that the opinions of the outfit are reflective of it knowing that cryptos are an existential threat to central bankers. Bitcoin guru Brian Kelly pointed out that in the Bitcoin/crypto ecosystem, you don’t need central bankers anymore.

During his interview, Cassar acknowledged this, noting that the banking industry has to keep up with the fast-changing digital world.

“But what it means for banks is that their traditional role as main payment intermediary for funds and currency transmission will become challenged, if not obsolete.”

Embrace Blockchain

About Blockchain, he made a comparison between the present environment to “rush-hour gridlock trapping a Formula 1 car.”

“I read recently that the present environment in which the digital world is evolving is like a rush-hour gridlock trapping a Formula 1 car! Therefore, Blockchain sounds wonderful – it can be a total game-changer. But going by our experience of technological innovation, a Blockchain revolution of business and government could still be years away because many barriers would need to fall in the meantime.”

Cassar’s comment about the Blockchain revolution gel with those of a geopolitical player. A few days ago, we reported George Friedman saying that Blockchain is useful now, but it could become obsolete due to new technology that is on the horizon. Called quantum computing, this technology is expected to mature in the coming years, and it could be better than Blockchain when it does.

Not going anywhere

Cassar spoke about how many banks have been steering clear of cryptocurrencies because of the novelty they present. He also noted banks don’t like them because they are not conventional legal tender, nor backed by a central bank.

In acknowledging this, he said:

“My view is that cryptocurrencies are here to stay and, just like the early days of the internet, which created a furor because of lack of regulation, once regulation and education improve and banks gain more confidence, some may reap first mover advantages. But there are still many unknowns and it may be a risky road until then.”

Cassar said money, whether conventional or crypto, needs payment systems to flow. The currency is the ‘what’ while the payment technology is the ‘how’ – but they are not one and the same, he said.

About cryptos, Cassar said:

“Will they be accepted as a store of value? How will they be regulated? Will they become legal tender? At this point, there is little evidence to suggest that cryptocurrencies, for all the hype, can be a threat to the fiat currencies in the short or medium term.”

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