Russian parliament could adopt law on digital financial assets

Russia’s parliament, the State Duma, could pass the long-awaited crypto laws as early as March – and it seems that the impasse between the pro-crypto companies and the cryptosceptic central bank could finally be overcome.

Anatoly Aksakov, the chairman of the Duma’s finance committee, a lawmaker for the “Just Russia” party and the man charged with getting the laws through parliament, said he hoped the Duma could pass the laws in next spring session.

Aksakov told state news agency RIA Novosti that although the Central Bank of Russia and other bodies had “conflicting views” on crypto-currencies, the parties had now found common ground.

The Committee Chairman stated that the parties had now found common ground,

“The differences of opinion had not yet been resolved. But another meeting took place last week and it seemed that they would come to an agreement. A text is now being prepared for submission to the appropriate institutions, including the central bank.”

 

This could lead to a second and possibly third reading of the laws, the first reading of which took place almost two years ago in the Duma.

Russia’s central bank has long been wary of crypto-currencies. As recently as November last year, senior bank officials hinted that they would support a proposed national ban on crypto payments because they pose “significant risks, including criminal money laundering and the financing of terrorist activities”.

Earlier this month, Aksakov said that major Russian companies were “ready to use block chain technology for commercial operations” and admitted that it was now time to create “a legal framework” for Russian crypto-companies.

The laws were originally proposed as a package of three fintech laws in early 2018, only one of which has since been passed. Ongoing disputes between crypto proponents and cryptosceptic state institutions have prevented the long-suffering Aksakov and his team from completing their legislative work.