Russia has been a key player in the effort to ban digital currencies for a while now, but things are about to change. According to recent reports, an official of the Russia’s Ministry of Finance has stated that the financial regulator will support a law meant to ban the use of bitcoin domestically, yet allow people to use it as a foreign currency.
With this in mind, the deputy finance minister, Alexei Moiseev, declared that their change of tone is partially due to the increasing popularity of digital currencies worldwide, and is meant to limit the use of alternatives to the ruble inside the country. Together with this, the amendments made to the law will likely remove the uncertainty that those working with blockchain technology have faced in Russia so far.
The announcement is a long-awaited change of tone for the organization, which has long militated to pass bills that would ban the use of digital currencies throughout the country, while also imposing criminal penalties for those who use it, without taking into account that positive remarks about bitcoin that the Russian Central Bank has made.
In a recent interview, the Ministry of Finance stated that Russia’s Constitution clearly mentions that the ruble is the sole currency that Russians can use in national commerce. However, the law will allow Russian citizens to both use and profit from digital currencies in other areas, where the activity is legal. Basically, as long as Russians use the cryptocurrency outside the country, they won’t face criminal penalties when they return to Russia, which is great news for bitcoin fans from all around the world.
In his statement, Moiseev said: "Can Russian citizens have a wallet and pay bitcoins in those countries where it is allowed? Why not? Therefore, we are formulating the law in such a way in order to allow buying cryptocurrencies for foreign operations and allow Russian citizens to sell bitcoins for profit reasons in foreign countries."
It’s worth pointing out that currently, citizens are free to use bitcoin inside the country. However, this will only last until the law becomes constitutional. Moiseev also mentioned that responsibility for bitcoin emission coming from data operators should be removed, as a way of avoiding the risk of being punished.
Reports indicate that the amended version of the law will be submitted to the state’s law-making body, the Duma, by the end of the year.
Based on everything that has been outlined so far, bitcoin will likely be voted out of Russia, but at least, blockchain operators will be allowed to work from within the country. What do you personally think about this change of perspective? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.