- The sponsor of this Bill also submitted another draft seeking a ban on using cryptos for settling financial transactions.
- This draft adds to the ongoing revisions of the “on digital currency” Bill, which Russian legislators are still discussing.
The Russian parliament has received a bill to introduce fines for anyone who engages in the illegal issuance or exchange of cryptocurrencies. The sponsor of this bill also submitted another draft seeking a ban on using digital assets to make payments.
Illegal crypto issuance might soon attract heavy financial penalties
Recently, the lower house of the Russian parliament (the State Duma) received a new bill regarding the issuance of cryptos. The Bill wants anyone, groups of persons, or firms who issues digital financial assets illegally to pay hefty fines.
It’s worth noting that digital financial assets (DFAs) are the legal definition of crypto in Russia. If this bill becomes law, crypto firms without an operating license from Russian regulators will be subject to heavy fines. The same rule will also apply to operators of investment platforms in Russia who do not have a Russian operating license.
The local news outlet, Forklog, was the first to break the news on Thursday. The draft proposes a fine of $90 (5,000 Russian rubles) and $550 (30,000 Russian rubles) for individuals and officials, respectively. Forklog also revealed that the financial punishment for legal entities could rise to $18,000 (it ranges from 700,000 to 1,000,000 rubles).
However, businesses could pay nearly $13,000 (about 700,000 rubles) for failing to comply with the digital assets’ rights regulation. The head of the parliament’s financial market committee, Anatoly Aksakov, is the sponsor of this draft.
The top-level legislator has been participating actively in the development of guidelines for Russia’s crypto space. The “on digital financial assets” policy is the only guideline for Russia’s current crypto space. The legislature passed this policy’s draft into law last January.
Related: Russia to legalize cryptocurrencies sooner or later, trade minister confirms
Banning DFAs for financial settlement
Earlier this month, Aksakov sponsored a previous bill seeking a ban on using DFAs for payment purposes across Russia. Authorities in Moscow are still discussing introducing more regulations for the crypto space. However, most legislature members are adamant that the ruble should be the only legal tender in Russia.
Nevertheless, the rising number of financial sanctions is forcing Russian authorities to enable crypto payments for financial transactions. Even the central bank of Russia has shown strong support for this idea. However, it noted that approval DFAs for financial settlement should be limited to small businesses.
The apex bank has been the leading opposer to approving DFAs to settle financial transactions. A new modification to the “on digital currency” bill might include approval for small businesses to start accepting DFAs as payments.
However, the Ministry of Finance (responsible for drafting the Bill) has yet to submit the newly modified draft to the legislature. The Ministry wants to complete ongoing discussions regarding provisions of the Bill before sending it to the legislature. However, Russian legislators will likely discuss the Bill at the fall session of the Duma.
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