Search

The Russian bill speaks of the adoption of cryptocurrencies as legal tender


Russia's finance ministry presented a finalized bill on cryptocurrency regulation in Russia last Friday. According to a report by Kommersant, the bill, entitled "Digital Currency", contains a detailed regulatory framework for the circulation of cryptocurrencies and, for the first time, touches mining. This opens up new opportunities for bitcoin miners, as they currently fall into a gray regulatory zone.


In addition to providing a legal framework for the circulation and issuance of cryptocurrencies, the bill also introduces certification, identification and accounting requirements for entities wishing to open up digital asset business in Russia. In particular, the bill states that digital currency can be accepted "as a means of payment that is not a currency unit of the Russian Federation".


The law sets out requirements for companies that intend to do business in the field of digital assets. For example, an exchange operator must have a minimum working capital of at least 30 million rubles in order to be granted an operating license. On the other hand, a digital trading platform operator who wants to do business in the circulation of virtual currencies must have at least 100 million rubles. The bill imposes strict rules on both operators, including the preparation of annual reports, requirements for managing authorities, internal audit and control, as well as the creation of a separate structural unit. Some of these rules have been identified by various cryptocurrency experts as unsatisfactory and overly damaging to digital asset operators.


The bill also comes at a time when the government has submitted another bill to the State Duma, which seeks to set a tax on transactions with digital assets. If the document is adopted, income tax will be 13% for Russian organizations owning digital assets, and 15% for foreign companies.


Although the central bank said it would not use cryptographic services to circumvent sanctions, the regulatory framework could still be beneficial for the country in the long run. Russia's central bank has recently licensed Russia's leading creditor, Sberbank, which allows it to issue digital assets. Given that several top crypto exchanges serving crypto active consumers in Russia have decided not to leave the country, the new regulatory clarity could help the area develop significantly, thus helping to mitigate the effect of the sanctions imposed.