On Monday, Russia’s Ministry of Finance announced that it will take the country’s apex bank’s proposals on cryptocurrencies into account. The ministry said it would do this as far as these proposals do not negate its own approach on allowing cryptocurrency to thrive in the country.
This is one step to providing legislation for cryptocurrencies in the country. The past weeks have been a heated one in Russia as there have been different opinions on allowing Bitcoin and mining activities to thrive in the country.
Late last month, the Central Bank of Russia Federation issued the first proposal asking for an outright ban on cryptocurrencies in the country. The apex bank cited a number of reasons for its proposal including threats to financial stability, the country’s monetary policy sovereignty, the wellbeing of citizens, etc. The country’s President, Vladmir Putin, has a different opinion on the proposal issued by the central bank. President Vladimir Putin was of the opinion that Bitcoin mining could be beneficial to the country as Russia has distinctive characteristics that’ll help the country make gains from Bitcoin mining. He requested that the apex bank come together with the finance ministry and arrive at what would be best for the country regarding the matter.
Early this month, the ministry of finance head Anton Siluanov proposed allowing banks to sell cryptocurrencies to members of the public. He specifically opined that trading cryptocurrency should be legalized and made possible through banks.
What this means, in other words, is that while the central bank is advocating for a complete ban on cryptocurrencies, the ministry of finance thinks allowing cryptocurrencies to scale in the country would be of greater benefit.
The ministry of finance isn’t pushing for legalizing or upgrading the status of cryptocurrencies to money like it is in El Salvador. Instead, it is pushing for legislation that’ll regulate cryptocurrency. This means that while they will not be recognized as a means of payment in the country, they will be seen as an investment tool.
According to what the finance ministry said on Monday, its draft legislation’s aim is to create a legal market for cryptocurrencies. One of the ministry’s proposals wants to tie transactions to customer identification and is aimed at eradicating fraud and money laundering. Other proposals are pushing for foreign cryptocurrency exchanges to obtain a license in the country and introducing financial literacy tests that determine how much individuals are permitted to invest.
On financial literacy, citizens who are deemed fit after passing the financial literacy tests will be allowed to invest up to 600,000 roubles in a year. Those who are deemed not financially literate enough about cryptocurrencies can only invest 50,000 roubles in a year.
The central bank which is still standing strong on an outright ban of cryptocurrencies and crypto mining operations is yet to respond to requests for comments.