Russia won’t officially legalize digital currencies in the near future, according to the conclusions of the participants of a “round table” dedicated to crypto regulation.

Issuance of Anything Besides Ruble is Still Illegal

On Thursday, July 25, a panel of Russian officials and experts discussed the regulation of cryptocurrency. The event was hosted by the press conference center of the “Parliamentary Newspaper,” an editorial managed by Russia’s Federal Assembly (the parliament).

The experts concluded that the integration of cryptocurrency into Russia’s financial system is a question of a distant future. First of all, the issuance of money other than ruble is considered illegal by the Constitution. Secondly, financial regulators are confused about the origin of Bitcoin and its brethren. They are also worried that many criminals can benefit from cryptocurrencies.

The round table was moderated by Senator Lyudmila Bokova, First Deputy Chairman of the Council of Federation Committee on Constitutional Legislation and State Building. She stated:

I consider it expedient not to force the [regulatory] process, but to analyze the experience of bigger economies. Let’s see how regulation is implemented there and what benefits or damage a country might receive from the introduction of such regulation.

The guests were Dmitry Zakharov, member of the Commission for the Legal Support of the Digital Economy of the Association of Lawyers of Russia, Mikhail Bykovsky, member of the thematic working group “Fintech” under the Center for Competence on the Digital Economy, and Arseny Poyarkov, Vice-President of the National Association of the Digital Economy.

You can watch the full event below by turning on the subtitles with English translation:

Russia Has to Regulate the Crypto Industry Anyway

Nevertheless, Russia should continue to work on legal mechanisms for regulating cryptocurrencies. Otherwise, the economy might lose the chance to evolve in line with the progressive digital practices observed in developed countries.

The first step to create a legal framework for cryptocurrencies was made earlier this year, when lawmakers passed the “digital assets” law. However, the bill doesn’t allow the use of Bitcoin and other digital currencies in parallel with the national fiat currency. Crypto mining is also illegal for now.

The invited experts insist on speeding up the crypto-friendly regulation. Dmitry Zakharov said that Russia really needed regulation and there was no time to wait.

He added,

We cannot overcome cryptocurrencies. While they (cryptocurrencies) were and are here to stay, the state still does not receive all the benefits that the new digital economy can provide

Zakharov stated that the lack of proper regulation of digital currencies could lead to the outflow of experts and the loss of potential investors.

Another reason to push for the crypto regulation is that Russia can benefit from mining operations thanks to its cheap electricity costs.

Do you think the Russian government could benefit from adopting cryptocurrencies? Share your thoughts in the comments section! 

Images via Shutterstock, video courtesy of Youtube @Совет Федерации 

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