With the current geopolitical conditions, the Bank of Russia and the country’s finance ministry are close to adopting cryptocurrency for cross-border dealings.
As the Russian invasion of Ukraine continues, the financial industry in Russia has been on its toes to find a way to circumvent the sanctions of the West on Russia.
According to a report by local media on Monday, Russia’s deputy finance minister, Alexei Moiseev in an interview with Russia-24 said that the Bank of Russia and Russia’s finance ministry have so far been approaching cryptocurrency differently, the Bank of Russia has however taken “into account the fact that the situation has changed, and we are rethinking.”
According to Moiseev, “Because the infrastructure we plan to create is too rigid to use cryptocurrencies in cross-border calculations, which, of course, must first of all legalise somehow. On the one hand, to enable people to do this, on the other hand, to put it under control so that there is no laundering, payment for drugs and so on.”
He furthered that the country’s apex bank and its finance ministry are on the same page in the current context and agreed that a new framework “is impossible to do without cross-border settlements in cryptocurrency.”
Meanwhile, last week, Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin hailed digital assets, according to him, “this is a safe alternative for all parties that can guarantee uninterrupted payment for the supply of goods from abroad and for export.”
Mishustin furthered this by urging the government and the Bank of Russia to combine their effort to develop “effective tools that meet the challenges of the new time.”
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Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine Affected institutional attitudes toward cryptocurrencies
Since the inception of the Russia-Ukraine war, institutional attitudes toward crypto have changed, although the finance ministry has been pro-crypto in its move, the country’s central bank has always been anti-crypto.
The sanction of Russia by the West has weakened Russia’s currency to a significant extent, which in turn affected institutional attitudes to crypto.
Digital assets are now seen as a safe space to neutralize sanctions against Russia, which if legalized, Russia will be following in Iran’s footsteps which recently approved the use of crypto for cross-border dealings.
Moiseev added saying: “Now people are opening crypto wallets outside the Russian Federation. It is necessary that this can be done in Russia, so that it is done by the subjects supervised by the Central Bank, who are obliged to comply with the requirements of anti-laundering legislation, and first of all, of course, to know their client.”