According to reports, the Russian State Duma recently proposed a regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies rather than banning their use entirely. This body has joined the Ministry of Finance in taking the same stance.
The Bank of Russia – the country’s largest bank by area – reiterated its negative policy toward the cryptocurrency sector earlier this year. The Bank of Russia called it a pyramid scheme that could undermine local sovereignty of monetary policy and threaten the local financial networks. It called upon the local government to prohibit all cryptocurrency-related ventures on the territory of Russia.
On the other hand, several institutions, including the Ministry of Finance, decided that a better step would be to regulate this asset class. At one point, even President Vladimir Putin joined the discussion, stating that Russia can benefit from this industry, and more specifically from its mining sector.
According to a local report, the State Duma also presented its opinion on the matter. A working group of 50 experts from the government suggested that Russia should introduce “clear regulations on digital assets.”
Key issues include strengthened Know Your Customer (KYC) procedures, additional investor protection, and monitoring of whether cryptocurrencies are used in illegal activities. Experts stressed that similar regulations already exist in other countries and Russia should not be left behind.
At the same time, the Lower House of Parliament is strongly opposed to banning all cryptocurrencies like the one in China (an idea proposed by the Bank of Russia).
A ban on BTC is like a ban on the Internet
Last month, Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said that banning cryptocurrencies is like banning the internet – simply impossible:
The Central Bank wants to take over and ban cryptocurrencies, arguing that this creates a risk primarily for citizens, can “infect” financial institutions, banks and create a non-transparent settlement market.
Before his speech, the minister met with Elvira Nabiullina (head of the Bank of Russia) and Dmitry Grigorenko (deputy prime minister). The officials’ goal was to “come to some sort of unanimous opinion” on cryptocurrency regulation. However, they have not been able to find a common solution to this issue.