Cryptocurrency Chaos in Russia as Finance Ministry and Central Bank Present Rival Bills

Everyone else is talking about how soon there could be war between Russia and Ukraine, with Western allies on their side. But in Moscow, the talk is about crypto.

As it was said, a long-awaited agreement between the Ministry of Finance and the Central Bank was thought to have been reached earlier this year. A piece of draught legislation was supposed to be unveiled today and sent to the State Duma (Russia’s parliament) in time for the spring session. This was supposed to happen.

It was only this week that the “consensus” started to break down. This was when the Central Bank started to say that the draught bill was not good enough. Now, it looks like there isn’t any consensus at all, and that the bitter disagreement between the parties is still as strong as it was when they first met.

The Central Bank is very against all types of crypto adoption, and they want to ban mining, owning crypto, and trading crypto like China does. The ministry, on the other hand, wants to regulate the industry with very strict rules, but it also wants to allow miners to keep working as long as they pay taxes on their profits.

In the past, President Vladimir Putin had told the parties to hurry up and work out their differences. It looks like they haven’t done anything like that. While the bill has been made public by the ministry, the Central Bank has responded by putting out its own bill, which again calls for a ban on it.

When the Finance Minister was talking to members of the local press about the intricacies of his own bill, it looks like the Central Bank was also talking about its own draught bill with other media outlets.

RBC said that it had a copy of the Central bank’s bill, which was “confirmed by a source who knows about the [Central Bank’s] project.”

While the ministry’s bill talks about regulating crypto exchanges and making sure that crypto traders link their transactions to banks, the bank wants to ban crypto and fine businesses that help crypto traders. Individual crypto traders, on the other hand, could face fines of up to $6,500 if they buy, sell, or hold coins.

“The ministry agrees with the Central Bank that cryptocurrency should not be used for payments,” a media outlet said, trying to find a silver lining in the midst of all the political chaos.

Even though crypto was banned in Russia two years ago, there is no common ground for the parties to build on.

RIA Novosti, which also said it had been told by “sources,” said that the Central Bank’s bill also proposes a media blackout of crypto news in Russia, which would mean that no one would be able to report on crypto news in Russia.

It also wants commercial banks to stop crypto transactions and even freeze the funds in accounts linked to crypto transactions, so that they can’t be used to buy things.

Over in Ukraine, the Rada (the country’s parliament) has just passed a law that regulates crypto.

On Cryptonews, Anto Paroian, CEO of digital assets investment fund ARK36, told the storey of how he came up with the idea of investing in digital assets.

“Ukraine’s balanced approach to regulating crypto shows that the adoption of digital assets on a national level doesn’t have to be a zero-sum game.”

“On the one hand, legislators don’t have to unnecessarily restrict citizens from accessing this promising asset class in order to put in place appropriate investor protection. On the other hand, crypto enthusiasts don’t need to fear regulation or see it as necessary evil only.”

It can help both sides if regulation is done correctly, he says, as Ukraine has shown. This can help crypto adoption and provide real economic benefits for both sides.

The Duma doesn’t seem to be able to think about this kind of “balanced approach,” though, for Russian MPs who have been under a lot of stress.

Anatoly Aksakov, the Chairman of the State Duma Committee on the Financial Markets, said that the Central Bank’s position was “understandable,” because crypto bans are likely to be put in place around the world. This is why he said it was.

“America will ban bitcoin (BTC) at some point. Now it is just a mosquito bite for them, but for us it is more serious than that.”

It was his opinion that most cryptoassets would eventually “crash.” In the meantime, he thought it would be better to tax miners and traders so that the government could use the money to pay for things like new roads and bridges.

Disclaimer: These are the writer’s opinions and should not be considered investment advice. Readers should do their own research.

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