The Kingdom of Cambodia is weighing the launch of its own cryptocurrency, following in the footsteps of Venezuela and its Petro coin offering last month, according to media reports. Entapay, as the Cambodian cryptocurrency is called, might be unveiled on Wednesday at the ASEAN BlockChain Summit, which will be held in Cambodia’s capital Phnom Penh and will feature Deputy Prime Minister Men Sam An among the attendees. However, the government has denied intentions of creating a national cryptocurrency.
According to a Friday press release, Entapay might become “the connection between integration payment of encrypted currency and the real world. It has the great potential to even replace Visa as the new mainstream payment mode.”
It seems that a national cryptocurrency is an attractive concept for countries facing sanctions. Russia and Iran have voiced similar intentions, while Venezuela has already launched its Petro, which is backed by oil and the country’s natural resources.
Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen, who has ruled for over 30 years, might face international sanctions because of his government’s attitude to political opposition, rights activists, and the mass media. The US said last week it would stop some of its assistance programs for the Cambodian government because the White House blames it for the current political problems. In light of this, the world’s longest-serving PM is probably keen on having a national cryptocurrency that would help the country mitigate the consequences of sanctions.
But even though a cryptocurrency seems like an attractive option, the government denied the rumors that it would issue one. Representatives for the National Bank of Cambodia (NBC) and the Securities and Exchange Commission of Cambodia (SECC) shut down such claims today, stating that the government has nothing to do with the summit or with Entapay and there are no plans to issue a national crypto coin.
On March 7, the country will host the ASEAN Blockchain Summit 2018, which will bring together representatives of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). It seems that Cambodia plans to become a regional blockchain hub, and the government has been exploring the potential of the technology for a few years.
Men Sam An confirmed she would be attending the summit.