Russian authorities are weighing whether to ban or legalize cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin, a senior legislator has revealed. Anatoly Aksakov told local media that the authorities will decide which direction to take in regards to crypto next year. However, other reports have indicated that the Bank of Russia is working with stakeholders and financial authorities to ban cryptocurrencies altogether. Regulators and lawmakers across countries are actively working on crypto regulations.
Bitcoin can’t be used in Russia for payments.
This is not the first time Russian authorities have sent mixed signals to the digital currency industry. The one thing it has clarified is that Bitcoin can’t be used in the country for payments. Although it has required public officials to reveal their holdings, it has not barred citizens from buying or holding cryptocurrencies. Aksakov, chair of the influential State Duma’s Committee on Financial Markets, told local media that the government is considering two completely opposite approaches—a blanket ban or legalizing crypto exchanges. Speaking at a recent press conference, the lawmaker stated that the government needs to decide soon. He believes this could be in early 2022.
Federal Tax Service might impose taxes on crypto exchanges.
According to a report by Interfax, the lawmaker said, “There exists a very tough approach about the complete prohibition of cryptocurrencies, such as acquisition or ownership. There [also] exists an approach where there must be appropriate crypto exchanges, where everything is legalized, transparent, and understandable to regulatory bodies.” Aksakov believes it would be better for the Federal Tax Service to impose taxes on crypto exchanges, implying he favors legalizing these entities. However, on the same day when the lawmaker claimed the government was weighing which approach to take, Reuters reported that the Bank of Russia has already made up its mind and wants Bitcoin banned.