Russian Senator States Propagation of Cryptocurrency is Inevitable

News and Analysis

Lyudmila Bokova, deputy chairwoman at Russian Federation Council’s costitutional committee, states that propagation of cryptocurrencies in Russia shall be deemed inevitable. For that reason, she believes, the government should consider regulating cryptocurrency instead of bannning it.

Last week, the head of Russian Investigative Committee Alexander Bastrykin stated that his agency insists on introducing criminal penalties for bitcoin operations.

However, Bokova did not side with him:

“The process of cryptocurrency integration is worldwide, and its propagation in Russia is inevitable. It would be unreasonable to avoid its usage. However, controlling the process is necessary, and explicit legal regulation of matters related to issuance and turnover of cryptocurrencies is required,” she stated according to RIA Novosti.

Bokova pointed out that several countries had recognized bitcoin as payment means and a commodity, and recalled the well-known ruling by the European Court of Justice.

“Controlling shall not always start with criminal penalty,” she said.

However, Bokova stressed that fighting terrorism funding, as well as financing of other illegal activities, as well as general protection of the state’s national interests remain necessary as well. In particular, she said, “removing parties’ anonymity from cryptocurrency operations” is worth considering.

“Probably, the process may be a notifying one, so that identities of transacting parties are disclosed,” she assumed.

The situation around cryptocurrency in Russia remains ambiguous. The senator’s statement signifies the continuing discord in the Russian establishment. In the absence of a pronounced government position in cryptocurrencies’ regard, Russian officials have divided into two parties, one of which stands for banning cryptocurrency, while the other believes cryptocurrency operations shall have the green light provided they’re regulated.

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