In Russia, prohibiting Bitcoin is the same as prohibiting the internet,’ a minister claims

Elvira Nabiullina, head of the Bank of Russia, has suggested that prohibiting Bitcoin in Russia was “very achievable.”

Russia’s finance minister Anton Siluanov claimed that banning cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin (BTC) is impossible, despite the Bank of Russia’s repeated calls for the state to do so.

In Russia, prohibiting cryptocurrency is the “same as prohibiting the internet, which is impossible,” Siluanov claimed Wednesday during the ministry’s meeting with the central bank.

According to reports, the finance minister said that regulating the cryptocurrency business immediately is preferable than prohibiting it since it would enable the government to finally control the market and boost the country’s revenue via crypto mining taxes.

“What’s wrong with it? I’m not sure why that should be prohibited,” Siluanov said during the briefing, adding that there is a simple way to tax the market. The minister believes that the government should collect taxes on realised profits on deposited and removed currency assets.

“The Central Bank seeks to prohibit crypto assets entirely, stating that they pose hazards, particularly to people, and have the potential to “infect” financial institutions and banks, as well as establish an opaque settlement market,” Siluanov said.

He noted that the finance ministry acknowledges these issues and hence believes it is important to restrict non-professional investors’ exposure to bitcoin as part of its idea of cryptocurrency regulation issued in early February. As such, the minister allegedly said that the maximum sum for unskilled investors might range between 50,000 and 100,000 Russian rubles ($660 and $1,300). Previously, Alexei Moiseev, Siluanov’s deputy, considered capping such purchases at $660.

Officials did not indicate whether the proposed cap would apply to monthly investments or contributions made at any other time. The ministry’s press office did not immediately react to a request for comment from Cointelegraph.

Meanwhile, the Bank of Russia opposes allowing non-professional investors to purchase cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, citing frequent hazards such as fraud and money laundering. When it comes to mining, the authority has been particularly unfriendly to crypto, warning against fraudulent mining operations for “nonexistent cryptocurrency.”

After years of disagreements, the Bank of Russia and the Russian government are poised to reach an agreement this Friday on crypto legislation in the nation.

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