A bill prepared by Russia’s Ministry of Finance targeting the creation and circulation of so-called money surrogates, a classification that would include digital currencies like bitcoin, has been at least temporarily withdrawn from consideration following comments from the country’s Justice Ministry.
As reported by regional news source RNS last week, the bill – popularly known as the “Russian bitcoin ban” – received some negative feedback after the Justice Ministry is said to have objected to the bill on the grounds that its comments were not incorporated. The national legislature, the Duma, has been deliberating the bill since earlier this year.
Up for debate is the extent to which those who issue or circulate private monies in Russia will be punished. Reports out of Russia have indicated that some advocates are pushing for multi-year jail sentences and fines, though the latest news points to disagreements among some in government about how to approach regulation for the technology.
Observers have suggested that defects within the bill may have doomed it from the start.
In statements, Nikita Soshnikov, partner at Moscow-based Tolkachev and Partners Law Firm, called the bill “poorly drafted”.
Soshnikov told CoinDesk:
“The [Finance] Ministry has not