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Kremlin bans crypto payments

With the ratification of a bill, the Duma bans payment in crypto and establishes a register of operators authorized to work in the sector.

Russia: only some will be allowed to make payments in cryptocurrency

With the approval of a controversial bill, the Duma, while waiting for a framework law to regulate cryptocurrencies in all their aspects and forms, bans payment in digital currencies and uses all those instruments that make it even partially possible. 

Digital currencies are defined as.

“A set of electronic data contained in an information system that can be accepted as a means of payment which is not the monetary unit of the Russian Federation, or as an investment.”

The temporary measure fills a legal gap concerning the use and understanding of cryptocurrencies in all their forms and variants and puts a severe stop to the development of digital assets on Russian soil, halting operations already underway to date. 

The tug-of-war between the Ministry of Finance and the Central Bank of Russia, which sees the former leaning toward encouraging the spread and use of cryptocurrencies while the latter toward banning them, brings the CBR momentarily ahead of the game

The restrictive measure of these currencies is not the only one contemplated in the bill. In fact, stockbrokers have been forced to refuse transactions involving the use of these assets as a means of payment.

The Central Bank of Russia (CBR) will maintain a special register containing DFA operators who are subjects of the Russian national payment system. 

Qualified investors will be able to trade freely in cryptocurrency amounts and instruments. On the other hand, those who do not obtain authorization will be able to trade with stringent limitations that place the transacted limit amount at €7,000 (₽600,000). 

The Russian Federation has temporarily banned digital financial assets (DFA), and the lower house of parliament has ratified the measure even though a broader and more specific framework law that will override the current one is being studied as soon as it is ready. 

Russia focuses more on its CBDC

Less than a month ago, the Minister of Industry and Trade, Denis Manturov, when interviewed at a forum on the subject, was reassuring on the issue. 

Manturov believes that eventually, Bitcoin and its companions will be part of the economic fabric of the transcontinental country, but not yet. 

The government has been monitoring the sector for years, and the last two have been studying the Digital Ruble, an actual digital state currency that will be favored over other cryptocurrencies on Russian soil but will not preclude its use. 

The Digital Ruble will be a reality by 2023, according to the latest statements by CBR Chairwoman Elvira Nabiullina. 

The currency has undergone several tests and is being refined before being officially launched. 

“The question is, when this will happen, how will it be regulated, now that the central bank and the government are actively working on it but everyone tends to understand that … sooner or later this will be implemented, in one format or another.”

Forklog reported how traders in the sector would be technically obliged to refuse to use instruments suitable for trading in digital currencies by favoring more traditional instruments. 

Moscow plans to strengthen the fiat ruble and subsequently launch and focus on the digital ruble. Only after these fundamental and pre-eminent steps for the country will digital currencies in general, as well as tokens, stablecoins, and NFTs, be liberalized in addition to all other instruments that make up the possibilities of operating in crypto indirectly, such as ETFs

George Michael Belardinelli
George Michael Belardinelli
A former corporate manager at Carifac Spa and later at Veneto Banca Scpa, blogger and Rhumière, over the years he has become passionate about philosophy and the opportunities that innovation and the media make available to us, in particular the metaverse and augmented reality