Though bitcoin regulation remains a divisive topic globally, there’s perhaps no country that has kept the international bitcoin community guessing about the digital currency’s future more than Russia.
For more than a year, the Ministry of Finance of the Russian Federation, the nation’s economic lawmaking body, has been repeatedly and staunchly against allowing its use as an alternative to government-issued money. Just last month, for example, deputy finance minister Alexey Moiseev told CoinDesk that the Ministry was working on a draft law that would seek to punish those converting cryptocurrencies into the ruble with up to four years in prison.
Outside of these statements, however, the agency’s opinion on bitcoin as a financial technology has been less clear.
Speaking to CoinDesk, Moiseev said that his office was dealing with bitcoin and its underlying technology in different ways:
“We feel that blockchain technology is very important in the development of various Internet-based services.”
Nonetheless, Moiseev remained vocal about the dangers of bitcoin as a means for facilitating payments, though his comments displayed a less aggressive stance than has been outwardly projected by his agency.
“We appreciate the potential relevance of blockchain technology for the development of e-commerce and therefore