Bitcoin awareness is increasing in Russia, and the government is hard at work in drafting a more definite regulatory environment for the use of crypto by citizens and businesses.
As BeInCrypto recently reported, Russia’s central bank suggested banning cryptocurrencies. The Russian Public Opinion Research Center has published a study on how Russians feel about crypto and using it. 64% of Russians have heard about bitcoin, while 17% possess a good understanding of bitcoin. Nineteen percent are totally unaware of bitcoin.
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Russians invested five trillion rubles as of December 2021, according to Anatoly Aksakov, head of the State Duma Financial Market Committee. An equal proportion of Russian citizens (32%) support and reject the central bank’s proposal, while 33% remain indifferent. Fifty-four percent of those aged 18-24 are against the proposal, while 50% of those aged 25-34 disagree with the proposal.
Over half the participants in the study believe bitcoin is a bad investment, and only 16% of those surveyed indicated a desire to buy. Four percent said they had already bought crypto, while 21% said they had relatives or friends who had already invested.
38% opine that crypto holdings are more challenging to steal. The central bank’s proposed ban on cryptocurrencies has been met with opposition from other institutions. It appears that the government will regulate and not ban cryptocurrencies.
Central bank’s opinion on crypto
The bank released a paper citing that cryptocurrencies are often used for fraudulent activities. The report recommends new legislation to prevent any crypto-related business from happening in the country. The paper suggested penalties for Russian citizens ad companies that transact in cryptocurrency. The bank also believes in the potential of a bank-issued digital currency to improve the banking infrastructure.
The Russian finance ministry is opposed to banning cryptocurrencies, citing the risk of lagging behind in the technology industry. It is more accommodating of regulation. At the RBC-Crypto conference, finance minister Ivan Chebeskov said that the ministry is awaiting feedback on a regulatory concept for crypto.
New working group employed
President Vladimir Putin called on the central bank and the finance ministry to agree. A working group consisting of the finance, economy, digital and interior ministries, the FSB security service, and the central bank have released a regulatory framework proposal.
One of the features of the proposal is that cryptocurrency brokerages would have to be done through Russian banks. Another is to prevent foreign crypto exchanges from doing business with Russian citizens.
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