Cambodia may be about to issue its own national cryptocurrency, following the footsteps of Venezuela who launched an oil-backed cryptocurrency, the “Petro,” in February. Cambodia’s national cryptocurrency would be named “Entapay.”
Entapay is expected to be revealed at a blockchain summit of Southeast Asian nations in the country’s capital, Phnom Penh, on March 7. Cambodia’s deputy prime minister Men Sam An is set to attend the conference.
A press release for the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Blockchain Summit claims Entapay may have the potential to overthrow payments giants like VISA. It reads:
“Entapay will be expected to 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.”
The press release further claims the cryptocurrency will be “the connection between integration payment of encrypted currency and the real world.” It references Venezuela’s Petro (PTR) as a way to “assist the country in avoiding the Western world’s economic sanctions.”
The Petro was created as a way for the country to bypass US sanctions, at a time in which Venezuela faces one of the deepest recessions ever. The country’s president, Nicolás Maduro, claims the Petro’s token sale netted the country $175 million in only a day, and has since ordered state-owned businesses to accept the cryptocurrency.
Other countries are considering the idea of launching a national cryptocurrency. As covered, Iran’s central bank recently rejected bitcoin and revealed it was working on its own cryptocurrency, while a Turkish politician called for a national cryptocurrency “before it’s too late.”
A Cambodian cryptocurrency, as The Telegraph notes, can be useful for the country’s prime minister, Hun Sen, who currently faces the threat of sanctions over his government’s crackdown on political opponents. A cryptocurrency’s semi-anonymity could help him bypass sanctions.
Meanwhile, the small Pacific nation of the Marshall Islands launched its own cryptocurrency, the Sovereign (SOV). The cryptocurrency will circulate alongside the US dollar, and will enjoy the status of a legal form of payment.