Ajay Banga, CEO of Mastercard, has publicly denounced cryptocurrencies like bitcoin, calling them “junk” if they lack government backing.
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“If the government creates digital currency, we will find a way to be in the game. We will provide rails for moving currency from customer to merchant. The government mandated digital currencies are interesting. Non-government mandated currency is junk,” Banga said.
Banga continued criticizing bitcoin for being volatile and for its use for illegal activities citing the recent ransomware attack, “wannacry” ransomware.
“If I pay for a bottle of water in Bitcoin, one day it is two bottles for a Bitcoin the other day it is 9,000 bottles. This does not work. Any currency needs stability and transparency, otherwise you will get all the illegal activities in the world. Why was the ransom for the virus (wannacry ransomware) collected in Bitcoin? Why has China cracked down on Bitcoin?”
Brock Pierce, Chairman of the Bitcoin Foundation, is taking these negative comments as good things.
“When the incumbent industry is making statements like this and acknowledging you…it’s a sign that what we’re doing is working…it’s a huge validation,” said Pierce.
Numerous prominent financial industry leaders have voiced their oppositional beliefs on bitcoin.
Axel Weber, the former President of Bundesbank and Chairman UBS, said:
“I get often asked why I’M so skeptical about Bitcoin, it probably comes from my background as a central banker.”