Russian Economic Ministry To Create Crypto And Blockchain Regulatory Sandboxes In New Bill

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The Russian Federal Ministry of Economic Development has proposed new legislation that seeks to legalize crypto as well as blockchain-based initiatives through a special regulatory framework.

The Ministry of Economic Development has already crafted and introduced a draft legislation to the State Duma, Russian Parliament, in a bid to enable the testing of blockchain and crypto initiatives in a specified regulatory sandbox.

The draft law will apply to digital technologies that will be incorporated into eight sectors ranging from financial markets, government services, trade, healthcare, distance learning, transport, manufacturing to construction.

The proposed legislation will be vital in unlocking experimental testing for projects such as unmanned automobiles, use of data without prior consent as well as diagnostics.

As per the local reports, partakers of the regulatory sandbox from the blockchain and crypto sector will enjoy regulatory relief in different fronts such as the minimum capital size, reporting as well as reserve funds. Those using the sandbox will also be exempted from the nation’s foreign exchange law.

According to the Economic Ministry, Russia’s central bank, Bank of Russia, will be solo financial market regulator in the regulatory sandbox. However, it is still not clear if the bank is supportive of the ministry’s initiative.

The latest news comes just hours after a top Bank of Russia official stated that the nation’s virtual assets law is set to ban the issuance as well as circulation of cryptocurrency. As per the official, the Digital Financial Assets bill is set to ban almost all crypto-based aspects apart from holding. The bill has been delayed various times after it was introduced to parliament back in January 2018. Not even an order from President Putin could see the bill sail through.

[Also Read: Russian Govt Looks To Block Censorship-Resistant Tech; IoT, TOR, and Telegram’s TON]

Push For Digital Payments

Meanwhile, Russia’s central bank is urging the citizens as well as merchants to utilize digital payments and cut on the use of cash, Reuters reports. The bank is pushing for the adoption of digital payments in efforts to stem the spread of coronavirus through banknotes.

The central bank is also urging banks to encourage their customers to use cashless means.