WebMoney expert consultant spoke about the current situation with the accounts of Ukrainian users

    The current situation with user accounts in an interview with Ukrainian Forbes was told by WebMoney expert advisor Alexei Titov.

    - What is your version of what is happening?
    - The tax police have suspicions about the legality of our work, and it checks these suspicions. The accounts of all enterprises operating in Ukraine using the WebMoney trademark are blocked.
    Our lawyers and independent experts call this step, to put it mildly, excessive. There were obvious excesses during searches and seizures of documents, but they affected only employees and the company itself, and we don’t want to discuss our personal problems on a public plane. First of all, we want to protect the rights of users and return to them what is rightfully owned.

    - Can Ukrainian users create new WebMoney wallets? Can they replenish their wallets or withdraw money?
    - Everything related to the technology platform is still working. You can create wallets and conduct transactions within the system. But Ukrainians cannot “withdraw” money, because these operations are tied to our bank accounts, which are currently blocked. I am sure they will be unblocked soon, but when this happens - in an hour, day, week - I do not know.

    - Do you take any actions to unlock accounts?
    - Yes, we file lawsuits, appeals, appeals - I don’t want to go into details. Unfortunately, all of these procedures have a specific review period. There is a faster way - if the people responsible for making the decision to seize the accounts call him back.

    - Have you tried to change the legal scheme of your work so that it does not cause complaints from state bodies?
    - We are ready to change the legal structure in which we work and switch to the scheme of work within the framework of electronic money legislation. But the electronic money system in Ukraine can only function if the rules of its work are agreed upon by the National Bank. Three years ago, the WebMoney partner bank in Ukraine submitted to the NBU the rules developed with our participation (WebMoney Note). And for three years the bank has not been able to get approval, the rules are not considered.

    - Why?
    - It's hard for me to say. The NBU only agreed on the rules of several systems (GlobalMoney, MoneXy and Maxi. - Forbes), and this happened more than three years ago. Since then, none of the systems has received the approval of the rules. There is an internal order under the NBU, which suspends their issuance. This fact is not clear to us.
    Not only we are waiting for approval, but also more than ten systems that submitted documents 2-3 years ago. Meanwhile, there is a legislative norm obliging the NBU to approve the submitted system rules within thirty days, or refuse to agree, or provide clarifying comments.

    Some officials at the NBU call our activities illegal. We, in turn, do not understand how the internal order of the NBU can suspend the law. With one hand, officials do not fulfill their obligations prescribed by law, and with the other hand they incriminate certain players in violation of the rules. I emphasize - we are talking about specific officials, and not about the regulator as a whole.

    - Until you get the approval of the rules, what legal scheme do you work on?
    - Speaking simplistically, that is, a number of financial assets that may be the subject of sale, transfer, exchange - and to work with these assets do not need special licenses. In particular, this is the transfer of rights of a monetary claim and the sale of such rights. These assets may be subject to transactions.

    Our legal structure has been tested many times and has undergone many examinations - in particular, it was studied by the Koretsky Institute of State and Law and the Kiev Research Institute of Forensics. They concluded that, according to the formal legal characteristics of WMU, there is no electronic money in the form in which they are formulated in current Ukrainian legislation.
    Such activity is legal and does not violate any norms. The issue of switching to a scheme with electronic money is a matter of our goodwill. And our will is to switch over so as not to confuse the user and be transparent to the regulator. But they do not give us this. In the meantime, they do not, we can work according to our legal scheme.
    If we are criticized for the strict implementation of the law - please let them criticize. We are talking about those "experts" who, not having studied our activities, say that legally this is one thing, and their subjective perception is another.

    - What is WebMoney in Ukraine?
    - These are several companies that operate with the rights of a monetary claim. They employ about 50 people. There are a lot of partner banks, but the main one is the Ukrainian Professional Bank; it stores collateral for obligations.

    - What is your relationship with the international WebMoney system?
    - There is an international organizational and technological platform that owns the rights to the WebMoney brand, accounting technology and services. She provides them to other entities - guarantors. These companies include our guarantors.

    We sell obligations and undertake to redeem them. The task is to provide free access for users to the acquisition of obligations and their repayment, redemption. For the technology platform, we are both customers and private users who buy rights to our obligations. We just have an extended interface of this platform, which allows us to keep track of the financial assets of our users. We pay the owner of the technology platform for access in the "Guarantor" format.
    The logic is this: due to the fact that we have this access, obligations are bought from us in hryvnia. As an issuer of the system, we receive a small commission when selling a financial asset - when the user "replenishes his electronic wallet". We earn only by “entering” money into the system; we do not charge a commission for “withdrawing”.

    - What are the monetary losses of guarantee companies from blocking accounts?
    - I do not want to focus on this, users care less. More importantly, another loss is a loss of confidence. Not only to us, but also to many processes that take place in the country. As for our income, there are myths that they are fabulous. It is not true. Our earnings are 1% of the commission from the sale of claim rights, that is, from the amount of "replenishment of wallets". These incomes cover the life of the company, the work of our professionals, technical means, the use of a technology platform, etc. But our activity does not bring excess profits.

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