Russia to Introduce Cryptocurrency Regulations by July 2018


Officials in Russia have submitted a draft of a federal legislation on initial coin offerings (ICOs) and cryptocurrencies regulations to the State Duma. Following on this, they expect Russia to introduce cryptocurrency regulations by July.

21 March, AtoZForex A number of Russian deputies, along with their leader Anatoly Aksakov, who is the chairman of the State Duma Committee on Financial Markets, have submitted a draft of a federal legislation on initial coin offerings (ICOs) and cryptocurrencies regulations to the State Duma.

Russia to Introduce Cryptocurrency Regulations by July

According to the official press release from State Duma, the documents on “Alternative Method of Fundraising” and “On Digital Financial Assets” were drafted in accordance with the recent instructions from the Russian President Vladimir Putin. The press release also states that the regulations are set to become law already by the 1st July 2018.

The Bill “On Digital Financial Assets” was initially introduced at the end of January by the Russian Ministry of Finance. The bill outlines that cryptocurrencies and tokens are digital financial assets. Therefore, it implies that they can only be traded through authorized cryptocurrency exchange operators. Moreover, this means that every ICO need to have Know-Your-Customer (KYC) regulations in place.

ICO and Crypto Regulations Details

The present version of the document sees digital assets as property, highlighting that they are not legitimate means of payment on the territory of Russia. According to Veselin Petkov, the financial expert, the current version of the bill differs from the one that was proposed by the Finance Ministry this January.

The newer version established KYC regulations for customer identity verification on cryptocurrency exchanges. According to Mr. Petkov, the new legislation would also echo the US requirements for the crypto exchanges. This implies that it would require the verification of the customer accounts for the Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Counter Terrorist Financing (CTF) purposes.

The Russian bill suggests the following requirements for operators of cryptocurrency exchanges:

“A digital wallet is opened by the operator of a digital financial assets exchange only after passing the identification procedures of the owner in accordance with the Federal Law “On combating money laundering and terrorism financing.”

There is also a discrepancy in regards to the ICOs. In oppose to the earlier proposed 50,000 rubles ($900) as a maximum amount of investment for unqualified investors, the bill now states that this number will be defined by the Central Bank of Russia.

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