The Bank of Russia and Russia’s Ministry of Finance have reportedly changed course regarding cryptocurrency usage. It appears they have plans to legalize the digital payment systems in cross-border settlements moving forward. It appears Russia has realized that it’s easier to move with the flow of the world instead of fighting the current.
This is based on a report from TASS after Russia’s Deputy Finance Minister Alexei Moiseev’s interview with Russia-24 TV station. Moiseev goes on to say, “The Central Bank has also rethought [the approach], taking into account the fact that the situation has changed, and we are rethinking it. Because the infrastructure that we plan to create is too rigid for the use of cryptocurrencies in cross-border settlements, which, of course, we must first of all legalize somehow.”
This is a starch change from past statements by Russia‘s lawmakers. Vladimir Putin signed a law earlier this year that was intended to “prohibit the use of digital assets, such as cryptocurrency and NFTs, to pay for goods and services.” This news marks a drastic change as the Bank of Russia appears set to change course.
Russia will now be forced to find a healthy regulatory framework allowing for the use of crypto. This means they will need to find ways to ensure Bitcoin’s not used for laundering money or paying for drugs. It appears they will keep the principle that citizens should be able to have crypto wallets instead focusing on KYC.
“Now people open crypto wallets outside the Russian Federation. It is necessary that this can be done in Russia, that this is done by entities supervised by the Central Bank, which are required to comply with the requirements of anti-money laundering legislation, and first of all, of course, to know their client,” the deputy minister explained.