Post release 2018

Cryptocurrencies are similar to discount bonuses in stores, states around the world are wary of regulating digital assets, and the Russian blockchain market is considered one of the most promising. Such opinions were presented within the large-scale blockchain event Blockchain Conference Moscow, which was held on April 17-18 at Sokolniki ECC in Moscow.

In general, speakers agreed that despite all the challenges that hinder the crypto market development, its future is seen in a positive light. Experts noted that it would be rather difficult to stop the development of the crypto industry.

Cryptocurrencies are similar to discount bonuses in stores

Dmitriy Potapenko, the Managing Partner of Management Development Group said that the main problem of the global crypto industry is the complete uncertainty in the terminology and understanding of ‘crypto’ in general. In his opinion, this creates problems both in the legislative and taxation fields, especially in the Russian Federation, where the regulatory authorities cannot arrive at a common view.

“First, the world has to reach common ground regarding the cryptocurrency. Today, different jurisdictions consider them as property, a contract, shares, means of payment. In the latter case, cryptocurrencies compete with state money: it is unlikely that this status will be common for cryptocurrencies”, Dmitriy asserts.

He also believes that bitcoin will lose its value and be reborn into something new.

“It's like discount bonuses in any retail network: the more people believe in them, the more they cost”, the speaker added.

As for ICOs, Dmitriy expressed the opinion that most of them are not trustworthy, therefore all tokensales participants are at risk.

“Mistake is made by both those who launch the ICO and those who invest in it. I’d say 90% of all ICOs are fraudulent schemes”, Dmitriy believes.

Russian blockchain market is one of the largest

Robert Wiecko, the Dash Project Manager, doesn’t share Dmitriy Potapenko's point of view on the challenges of the Russian crypto market. Dash representative believes that the Russian market is one of the largest for his company.

The speaker said that Dash plans to expand its presence both in Russia and the markets of Asia, South America and Africa. In his opinion, the crypto market development will help to solve many economic problems in these regions.

According to Robert, the main task of Dash on the mass cryptocurrency adaptation is the development of the Dash Evolution platform with instant payments and low fees.

Crypto business and government thaw

Alisa Muskinova, the Head of Financial Institutions Department at TFH Legal UK, also believes that in the CIS countries there is a thaw in the relations between traditional banking institutions and crypto business. In particular, she said that Belarusian banks are ready to cooperate with crypto companies, if their business doesn’t contradict the laws of the country.

In addition, she said that the initial money threshold for ICO entrepreneurs is unreasonably high, and startups cannot begin to develop their business. This position was supported by Oleg Kondratev, the Head of the Legal Department at NEUROMACHINE OÜ. He said that a similar barrier can be established by the Russian authorities in the near future.

Adoption of laws in Russia is slow in coming

Elina Sidorenko, the Head of the interdepartmental working group on cryptocurrency turnover in the Russian Federation, shared insider information that the development of laws on cryptocurrencies is slow in coming not only in Russia, but throughout the world.

“We expect specific solutions from different countries of the world by mid-2019. They are unlikely to appear earlier. Today, the most advanced jurisdictions in the world on cryptocurrencies are those having a developed banking system”, Elina reported.

The speaker is also skeptical about the advent of Russian laws on cryptocurrency by the summer of 2018.

“There are concerns that this process can drag on. Ministries may not agree on mechanisms for implementing certain provisions of laws”, Elina Sidorenko said.

According to the speaker, when considering the crypto market regulation, the state most often looks back at the FATF, the Financial Action Task Force on combating money laundering. And Russia is no exception here. No financial institution will rebel against the FATF. However, according to Elina Sidorenko, any regulation of cryptocurrencies may lead any country to a ‘financial well’, from which it will be difficult to get out. In its turn, the FATF doesn’t even include the issue of cryptocurrency regulation to the agenda of 2018.

Banks first, everything else is to follow

Victor Morozov, the Risk Assurance Director at PwC, believes that the regulation of relations between banks and crypto companies, as well as the regulation of the cryptocurrency exchange for fiat money, can become the main international legal trend.

The speaker also believes that soon there will be new breakthrough achievements in the field of mining. He views this sector as a promising one.

Cryptocurrency is new gold

Joshua Rotbart, a global expert on precious metals for investment, compared investment prospects of cryptocurrency with gold and other precious metals.

“It is the decentralization that investors like in both assets”, Joshua Rotbart says.

Blockchain in logistics

Rene Bostic, the Technical Vice President of Innovation and New Technologies at IBM Cloud, told about IBM’s partnership with the Danish logistics company Maersk, concluded on a venture basis. According to the speaker, the partnership is meant to improve client-oriented approach of sea shipping companies. The companies plan to create an automated blockchain platform that will ensure traceability of goods and improve control over the terms of their transportation. The costs at each stage of goods delivery will be reduced as well.

“When consumers find defects in products, they often face problems with communication with the manufacturer. Our project will simplify this part of the relationship between the buyer and the seller”, Rene Bostic said.

She also noted that blockchain is the most attractive direction for IT specialists.

Pitch zone

The event included a pitch session of the exhibitors. The companies told about themselves and their products, and explained why it is necessary to visit their stand.

The pitch zone also featured open lectures, where crypto experts and businesspeople shared their experience with the audience. For instance, the Partner at Swiss Quote Bank in Eastern Europe and Asia, Igor Voronin, told the audience about safe cryptocurrency trading. Bitfury representative, Nikolay Guntner shared practical advice on the blockchain implementation into business. The expert on investment in cryptocurrency, mining and ICO Alexei Mikheev explained how smart contracts work. Community manager at, Leonid Foiu-Khatskevych told how much one can earn by participating in bounty campaigns and how to do it properly. The analyst and trader of the iTuber online investors' community Igor Porokh shared the basics of interaction with virtual currencies: how to create a cryptocurrency wallet, how to acquire cryptocurrency, how to buy something for it, what data about a wallet shouldn’t be published and what trends are there on the cryptocurrency market.

Exhibition area

Within two days, the event attendees were able to enjoy the large exhibition area. The stands included mining equipment: ASICs, video cards, farms, cooling systems, power supplies. The hardware suppliers were such companies as Dragonmint, Atiko, Acron Tech, Bitferma, MinerShop, 51 ASIC, MYRIG and Bitmoney. The area also featured a stand of Asic Repair, the company engaged in mining equipment repair.

Dash has also presented its stand, introducing its draft payment system Dash Evolution. It is designed to compete with such popular platforms as PayPal or Visa.

The event team expresses its gratitude to the sponsors: Dash, Talao, MYRIG, CoinTraffic, HiDone, BitBaza, Money Maker Group, Zeon Trading Platform.

The event organizer, Smile-Expo, is going to hold many other blockchain conferences in 2018. The upcoming ones will be held in the Czech Republic, Finland and Australia. Follow the news on the official website of Smile-Expo.