Imagine being able to buy natural gas using crypto-currency with both commodity and full government backing.
That is the aim Cypriot entrepreneurs Nikos Bentenitis, Chair of the Education Committee of the Bitcoin Foundation, and Daniel Hadjittofi.
In an interview with the Cyprus Mail, the duo explained how the release of Energy Coin would not only attract long-term investment to help stabilize the Cypriot economy, but also provide a realistic alternative to fiat currency for the future.
“If Bitcoin, hounded as it is by governments across the globe, has held its own and is going for [US]$500,” Hadjittofi said, “imagine what value a crypto-currency can attain with government backing.”
Hadjittofi, a financial analyst and former Executive Director of the Cyprus Fulbright Commission, added that the starting price of a coin would be determined by the issuer, with its success to some extent dependent upon having a reputable organization ‘in charge’ of its evolution.
Pre-mining would also be assumed in order for more funds to be available for the operation early on.
Bentenitis says, however, that the issuer would only be able to exchange Energy Coin for the amount of gas promised, whereas in the secondary market it could be redeemed for other crypto-currencies or euros, should such an exchange be permitted.
“I can give you one Energy Coin if you give me one Bitcoin, let’s say. You can then go to the issuer of the Energy Coin and ask for the specified amount of natural gas. I, on the other hand, cannot go to the same issuer and ask for the natural gas that the Energy Coin used to entitle me to,” he told the Cyprus Mail.
But it goes further. “Energy Coins could be used to finance the government, pay civil servants’ salaries etc.,” adds Hadjittofi. “We don’t know yet how much revenues the gas will yield. However the government might decide that the revenues will be as much as it needs to pay off the troika – say €10bn. The government then makes an announcement that it will issue one billion Energy Coins at €10 a pop. At the end of each year, once the natural gas starts flowing, holders of the coins will get dividends until the gas runs out.”
The scheme has already been put before software developers and now its creators consider it only a matter of educating the shareholders and government before the scheme is seriously considered.
Hadjittofi is meanwhile a relatively new Bitcoin evangelist, having never owned any bitcoins and finds the most promise in crypto-currencies’ offering alternative to fiat and the banks, from whose machinations Cypriots are still very much feeling the effects.
“I’m no Bitcoin diehard,” he told the paper. “…Bitcoin is growing on me because of the dangerous route that fiat money is taking.”
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