- Russia is close to pushing legislation for the use of cryptocurrency in international trade.
- In current conditions “it is impossible to do without cross-border settlements in cryptocurrency,” the Bank of Russia and Ministry of Finance have reportedly agreed.
- The necessary regulatory framework will still need to be introduced.
The Bank of Russia and the country’s Ministry of Finance have reconsidered their positions toward cryptocurrency, acknowledging it to be necessary to legalize the use of cryptocurrencies in cross-border settlements, per a report by local news outlet TASS.
According to TASS, the two government bodies have agreed that “it is impossible” to continue without enabling cryptocurrency as a legal payment method for international trade.
The move comes as Russia dabbles on how to best regulate the Bitcoin and cryptocurrency markets. Swamped in Western sanctions, the world’s largest country has sought alternatives to the U.S. dollar so as to guarantee the efficient trade of its commodities.
In March, the chairman of the country’s Congressional energy committee, Pavel Zavalny, said the country was open to taking payments for natural gas and other natural resources exports in bitcoin.
“When it comes to our ‘friendly’ countries, like China or Turkey, which don’t pressure us, then we have been offering them for a while to switch payments to national currencies, like rubles and yuan,” Zavalny said at the time. “With Turkey, it can be lira and rubles. So there can be a variety of currencies, and that’s a standard practice. If they want bitcoin, we will trade in bitcoin.”
In May, it was reported that Russia was “actively discussing” using cryptocurrency in international trade.
Now, the imminent actualization of such a move shifts the tide as President Vladimir Putin last year had dismissed the possibility in an interview at the Russian Energy Week event in Moscow.
“I believe that it has value,” Putin said at the time, referring to bitcoin. “But I don’t believe it can be used in the oil trade.”
According to TASS, the necessary regulatory framework to enable cross-border settlements in cryptocurrency in Russia will still be introduced.