Vladimir Putin has called for a new international payments system based on digital currencies and blockchain.

The Russia President wants to see an independent system established after the West sanctioned his country following its invasion of Ukraine.

Speaking at the International AI Journey Conference in Moscow – organised by Russia’s largest bank Sberbank – he criticised the monopoly in global financial payment systems and labelled the sanctions “illegitimate restrictions”.

“The technology of digital currencies and blockchains can be used to create a new system of international settlements that will be much more convenient, absolutely safe for its users and, most importantly, will not depend on banks or interference by third countries,” he said. 

“The existing system of international payments is expensive; the system of its correspondent accounts and regulation are controlled by a narrow club of states and financial groups.

“I am confident that something like this will certainly be created and will develop because nobody likes the dictate of monopolists, which is harming all parties, including the monopolists themselves.”

Russia is looking to launch a national crypto exchange, supported by both the Ministry of Finance and the Central Bank of Russia, which tend to disagree over crypto regulation in the country. 

A new legal bill has also been introduced into the Duma – the lower house of parliament – with the aim of legalising cryptocurrency mining and the sale of cryptocurrency.

Cryptocurrency shorts

Tiantian Kullander, co-founder of Hong Kong-based digital asset company Amber Group, has died in his sleep aged 30. The former trader, described as a “devoted husband, a loving father and a fierce friend”, became a member of the Forbes 30 Under 30 list in 2019. His company reached a $3 billion valuation earlier this year with a $200 million funding round.

Wall Street bank JP Morgan has received approval from the US Patent and Trademark Office for crypto wallet trademark the JP Morgan Wallet. 

Web3 game publisher Fenix Games has raised $150m to build an empire of blockchain games. CEO Chris Ko, who previously led Mythical Games, said it will operate “like a VC fund” for blockchain games.

Midnight, led by former execs at Soundcloud and Disney, has raised $7.5m seed funding led by Shima Capital. The Web3 games company is to implement a ‘forging’ system for NFTs into its games.

Crypto prices

The overall market cap of the 21,800 coins is at $819 billion at the time of writing (7am UK), down from $827bn on Friday morning.

For round-ups of recent cryptocurrency news developments, click here.

For valuations of the top 100 coins by market cap in US dollars, plus 24-hour price change, see below.