Sergei Guriev, a professor of economics at the Vladimir Institute for Political Studies in Paris and a critic of Vladimir Putin, said Bitcoin could be used as a tool to fight authoritarian regimes, even though it has no “fundamental social value”.
Unlike fiat currencies, the purchasing power of Bitcoin is not supported by any institution. That is why, according to Guriev, “Bitcoin is just a speculative tool without any fundamental value.”
He also pointed out that unlike the company’s shares, Bitcoin does not produce and does not promise to produce cash flow.
“Bitcoin does not produce anything with added value, ” he said. Its value is “entirely dependent on all parties that are happy to use it as a medium of exchange,” Guriev said.
Guriev, however, acknowledges the important role of Bitcoin in authoritarian regimes. In countries like Russia, it is used as a valuable tool for anonymous opposition support.
“The Russian government ensures that non-anonymous opposition donors are in some way harassed or persecuted.”
Guriev left Russia to escape harassment by Russian authorities after openly supporting local opposition to Vladimir Putin’s regime.
According to Guriev, Bitcoin’s pseudonym and its censorship resilience are the main reason Russia is about to pass a law that will oppose the country’s digital currencies.
“Anonymous fundraising tools such as digital currencies are an enemy of the Russian state,” he said.