Russia Reportedly Approves Bitcoin For Cross-border Payments

September 26, 2022

Reading Time: 2 minutes

The Bank of Russia and the country’s finance ministry have been divided on their opinions regarding crypto adoption in the country for a long time, reports from Russia now suggest that both institutions have reached a common ground.

As western sanctions continue to be effective on Russia’s economy, the Bank of Russia and the country’s finance ministry have been looking for a strategy to neutralize the effects of the sanctions, leaving them with the option of digital currencies.

According to a recent report from the Russia-based publication Kommersant, both the Bank of Russia and the Russian finance ministry have reportedly agreed to legalize Bitcoin for cross-border dealings.

Alexei Moiseev, Russia’s Deputy Finance Minister disclosed the information which according to him, the government has agreed “on the whole” with the Bank of Russia to let Russians make cross-border payments using digital currencies. The proposed policy change was reportedly aimed at allowing Russian nationals access to digital wallets.

“[The policy] generally describes how to acquire cryptocurrency, what can be done with it, and how it can or cannot be settled with it in the first place in cross-border settlements,” said Moiseev in the report.

Russian media have over time been reporting that the country’s apex bank has been discussing the issue of cross-border crypto transactions with the country’s officials although the Bank of Russia has been the leading opponent of crypto adoption in the country.

“Now that people are opening crypto wallets outside the Russian Federation, it is necessary to do this in Russia with entities supervised by the central bank, which are required to comply with Anti-Money Laundering and Know Your Customer requirements,” said Moiseev in a statement on September 5.

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Russia’s Relationship with Crypto

Russia’s relationship with crypto has been mixed, with different institutions in the country divided on their opinions on cryptocurrency adoption in the country.

Russia’s finance ministry has pushed several times for the adoption of crypto in the country over time, while Russia’s apex bank has always been the leading opposition to this move.

In 2020, Russia legislated the prohibition of using cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin for payments in the country.

Also, earlier this year, President Vladimir Putin signed into law, a bill that banned the use of digital financial assets as payment in the country.

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