Earlier last year, the news of Russia banning Bitcoin started making rounds in the media and the legal status of Bitcoin in the country has been unclear ever since. In what seems to be a move to understand the digital currency better and clarify its stance, the Central Bank of Russia has invited the representatives from the Bitcoin and other digital currency businesses along with those from financial sector to discuss about potential use of Bitcoin in Russia.
According to reports, as received by one of the Russian news publication, the regulators are expected to have a positive outlook towards Bitcoin compared to previous years. The discussion might focus on regulating Bitcoin payments, exchange and international transfer by implementing Anti-Money Laundering and Know Your Customer regulations.
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AML and KYC requirements are a norm being implemented as part of the regulations. In few countries, in the absence of Bitcoin regulations, exchanges have voluntarily implemented the AML and KYC regulations so that they are in the right side of the law, in case regulations are passed sometime in the near future.
If the regulators in Russia take a positive view of Bitcoin and decide to introduce regulations, it is likely that the merchants accepting Bitcoin would have to seek registration or licenses in this regard. At the same time, the previous warning issued by the Central Bank of Russia with regard to use of Bitcoin was in no way different from the warnings issued by many central banks across the world, expect for the language and the way it was structured to sound intimidating.
However, there was an attempt to introduce media blackout against Bitcoin and other digital currencies by banning such mentions. But it didn’t really take off as the ban was overturned by the courts in Russia. Due to the lack of clarity about Bitcoin’s legal status, businesses are facing a hard time operating in the country. Hopefully, the Central Bank of Russia clears the air soon by bringing in some positive regulations.
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I see, I think and I do… passionate about digital currency, start-ups and social good. I believe that if you mix them right, you can change the world. Find me @gautham_n on twitter or /gautham,nm on facebook
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