In the midst of ongoing Russian aggression, Ukraine is increasingly turning to cryptocurrency for its aid and financial needs. According to a top-ranking official, crypto allows the country receive quick money distributions and work internationally.
Ukraine actively sought financial assistance in crypto donation form since the Russian military attack began. “It’s a very rapid way to get a payment — in times like that you can’t just wait for days to get money and then you have to distribute them,” the country’s Deputy Minister of Digital Transformation Oleksandr Bornyakov said in an interview.
Officials in Kyiv established a partnership fund with major cryptocurrency exchanges right after the invasion. “So money immediately started to go in. And so far we have collected more than $30 million,” Bornyakov told Fox News.
The fund he was referring to accepts contributions for defense purposes but Bornyakov pointed out that other funds successfully raise money for humanitarian tasks in support of Ukraine’s civilian population. “I think, so far we’ve collected around $100 million for different purposes,” he detailed, without specifying whether he meant crypto assets.
According to the deputy minister, Ukraine has the ability to convert its digital currency into U.S. dollars or euros.
Oleksandr Bornyakov elaborated that right now it’s very difficult for Ukrainian authorities to supply anything from abroad because Russian forces have been advancing from multiple directions. “The crypto fund is really helping to do that very quickly,” he said.
Bornyakov spoke out about concerns that Russia could also use crypto to escape western sanctions. She said that Ukraine was in touch with key cryptocurrency exchanges, blockchainforensics firms and anti money laundering bodies to get information about Russians.
Although the Ukrainian official is skeptical about Russia’s potential to employ crypto to circumvent the sanctions, his government has been trying to expose crypto wallets used by politicians in Moscow but failed to convince platforms like Binance and Kraken to freeze all Russian accounts as Kyiv had requested.
Ukraine received large amounts of bitcoin and ether and has been increasing the number of accepted cryptos to include dogecoin and polkadot. Binance pledged $10 million and facilitated assistance through crowdfunding. This was in addition to the support of the global crypto community.
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