The Russian State Duma has passed a bill on Wednesday legalizing cryptocurrencies in the country and also properly defining them.
As reported by local news agency TASS, the legislative body approved the draft bill in the third reading.
In Russia, any digital currency will now be recognized as a set of electronic data which can be used for payments purpose or even as an investment tool. These currencies do not have any centrally responsible party and are maintained by the operators and nodes of the blockchain system.
The bill also clarified that the country sees the digital currencies as a type of property, and they cannot be used as a mode of payment.
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The clarification on the Russian government’s stance on crypto came after years of confusion. The lawmakers previously even moved a bill seeking a ban on all crypto trading services in the country, labeling them illegal, but that faced backlash from the already operating Russian crypto businesses.
The crypto industry might remain the same
The new laws to regulate cryptocurrencies will come into effect on January 1, 2021, however, many experts believe that this will not change the existing crypto industry in the country as the bill only gives a legal definition to the digital currencies.
Anatoly Aksakov, one of the members of the State Duma and the bill’s sponsor, detailed to one of the local news agencies that the new regulations will allow local companies to issue stablecoins.
The bill also detailed that, from now on, the Russian central bank will oversee any issuance of new digital currencies in the country, and will further decide on the features. The monetary regulator will also decide on a framework of selling of the digital currencies to qualified investors.