HODLers in Russia have reason to rejoice, since cryptocurrency ownership in the country may soon be permitted. According to a February 8 declaration, the Russian government and central bank are working together to develop draft laws that will designate cryptocurrency as currency.
After previously recommending a ban on cryptocurrencies, the Bank of Russia has finally achieved an agreement with the Russian government on how to regulate them. The two organizations intend to legalize cryptocurrency and establish clear industry standards that will foster growth while protecting investors through a draft law that will be finalized by February 18.
Cryptocurrency transactions will be permitted only through banking institutions or licensed organizations in Russia, according to the proposed standards. In other words, banks will be permitted to operate as middlemen between users and cryptocurrency exchanges. Such banks will employ Rosfinmonitoring’s Transparent Blockchain transaction tool to inspect transactions for evidence of illegal activity.
Users will be obliged to declare crypto transactions worth more than 600,000 rubles (about $8,000) to the Federal Taxation Service or face criminal prosecution. Furthermore, there would be severe penalties for illegally accepting bitcoins as a payment option.
The declaration states that the Russia government intends to defend investors’ rights while also limiting the use of cryptocurrencies in criminal activity.
The announcement comes after months of speculation about Russia’s true stance on cryptocurrency. The central bank called for a comprehensive ban on cryptocurrency mining and trade last month. However, less than a week later, Russia President Vladimir Putin appeared to be in favor of regulating and taxing cryptocurrency mining due to the country’s comparative advantages.
For the time being, it is difficult to predict how the proposed draft law will affect investors and enterprises operating in Russia. Nonetheless, the action indicates the country’s changing posture toward cryptocurrencies, and if these guidelines are implemented, they will certainly solidify Russia’s position as one of the world’s main bitcoin mining hubs.
Furthermore, Russia could become an appealing destination for bitcoin businesses, talent, and projects in the future.