Russia’s Central Bank and Finance Ministry Fail to Reach an Agreement on Crypto Meet

In a Tuesday meeting, the Bank of Russia and the Ministry of Finance allegedly argued over cryptocurrency regulation.

The Bank of Russia and the Ministry of Finance have yet to agree on how to regulate cryptocurrency. Elvira Nabiullina, the Bank of Russia’s president, met with the country’s finance minister Anton Siluanov and Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Grigroenko on Tuesday to discuss the burgeoning asset class. However, they failed to address lingering differences over cryptocurrency legislation, according to unidentified sources quoted in a Bloomberg storey.

The central bank suggested a blanket ban on all cryptocurrency activity in Russia last month, citing concerns about economic stability and the potential use of the assets for illegal purposes. However, the central bank’s plan received no backing from the Putin-led government’s finance ministry, which has advocated for crypto regulation.

President Vladimir Putin later said that he preferred regulated crypto mining over a blanket prohibition. He said in a speech that Russia has “advantages” in crypto mining as a result of its abundant energy generation (Russia is currently the third-largest Bitcoin mining hub after the United States and Kazakhstan). Putin also demanded an agreement on the subject from the central bank and finance ministry, but the two parties have yet to reach an accord.

Nabiullina allegedly underlined her opposition to cryptocurrency and sought a total ban in a Friday letter to Siluanov. Meanwhile, the administration has expressed a desire to establish a regulatory framework. The Ministry of Finance has previously provided an overview of its regulatory objectives for the cryptocurrency industry.

“We need to establish clear and transparent laws for people and companies to participate in the crypto market’s financial instruments,” Deputy Finance Minister Alexey Moiseev said in a Monday media release.

As a result, no progress has been achieved in bridging the divide between central banks’ concerns about cryptocurrency and the government’s desire to formalise the industry. Notably, cryptocurrency is not a subculture in Russia. According to a recent official estimate, Russians possessed crypto assets valued at more than 16.5 trillion rubles, or nearly $214 billion.

Given Putin’s apparent desire for Russia to dominate the Bitcoin mining industry, and an outright crypto ban is less plausible, particularly amid worries of economic penalties related to Ukraine’s current war.

Also Read: Belarus’s President Issues A Proclamation Promoting Cryptocurrency Freedom Of Circulation