Survey shows 31% of Russians 'ready' to buy cryptocurrency

A survey involving 2,100 Russians has shown that 31 percent of the participants are “ready” to purchase a cryptocurrency in the next six months.

The online survey by Swiss crypto wallet Tangem also showed that 40 percent of the respondents were not sure about investing, while 30 percent were determined not to purchase crypto.

Meanwhile, 72 percent of the respondents never purchased cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. About five percent stopped buying cryptocurrencies after the first time, while 23 percent still regularly invest in them.

Only six percent of the respondents had good knowledge of cryptocurrency, while 80 percent of them were only familiar with the term.

The survey also examined Russians’ attitudes toward cryptocurrency. Nine percent of the respondents showed a negative attitude, 45 percent said they were positive about it, and the rest were neutral.

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Respondents were also asked about reasons for investing and not investing in cryptocurrency. The survey revealed that 44 percent of them would invest in cryptocurrency due to the “ability to earn." On the other hand, 68 percent said the lack of “physical backing” was their reason not to invest in a virtual currency.

Cryptocurrency in Russia

InDefi CEO Sergei Mendeleev estimated that the number of active and passive crypto consumers in Russia was around 1 percent of the country's total population, which is 144.4 million. Mendeleev said the low number was caused by the lack of a legal method to conduct crypto transactions within the country and the risk of banks blocking their assets.

However, analysts recently revealed Russians started to turn into cryptocurrencies after the Bank of Russia placed restrictions on foreign currencies. Nikita Vassev of TerraCrypto said “many” Russians moved their money out of the country using Bitcoin and stablecoins, then cashing them out in other countries like the United Arab Emirates and Georgia.

A past survey in 2021 showed that 77 percent of Russian investors preferred to invest in Bitcoin over traditional assets like gold and foreign exchanges. According to Evgeny Masharov of Russia’s Association of Forex Dealers, the finding displayed Russians’ perspective that virtual currency was not just a “hype product."

A report released earlier this year by the Kremlin showed that the citizens of Russia owned crypto assets worth 16.5 trillion rubles (approximately $200 billion) by the end of 2021. Bloomberg has also estimated that Russia held 12 percent of global crypto assets.

Experts believe Kremlin’s estimation was on the lower side because the country had no clear regulation on the crypto market. There used to be a negative attitude towards crypto as the government feared it would be used to conduct illegal activities, such as money laundering.

However, earlier in May, Russia announced plans to legalize cryptocurrencies as a payment method in the country. The government and central bank reportedly worked to implement the strategy.

"The question is, when this happens, how it will be regulated, now that the central bank and government are actively working on it," Russia Industry and Trade Minister Denis Manturov said.

"But everyone tends to understand that ... sooner or later this will be implemented, in some format or other."