Russia is expected to legalize bitcoin and other forms of crypto as payment methods soon, according to the country’s Industry and Trade Minister Denis Manturov.
Russia and cryptocurrencies… a perfect combination?
In a recent interview, he commented that the country is potentially looking to resolve its current cryptocurrency dispute with its central banking system, although he is not sure what kind of regulation Russia will impose later on. He commented:
The question is when will that happen, how will it be regulated, now that the central bank and the government are actively working on it, but everyone tends to understand that… sooner or later it will be implemented, in one format or another.
The move is bringing the goals of bitcoin and its digital counterparts closer to being achieved. What many people are likely to forget is that while Bitcoin and many of its crypto cousins have gained speculative or even hedge status in recent years, many of them were initially designed to serve as payment tools. They were created to sideline checks, credit cards, and fiat currencies, but this has been a relatively slow ride given the volatility that continues to drag them down.
It is extremely difficult to understand when Bitcoin and its family of cryptocurrencies are going to go up or down when it comes to their prices. Many stores and businesses are reluctant to say “yes” when it comes to accepting cryptocurrency payments for this reason, and to some extent, we can’t blame them.
Consider the following scenario: someone walks into a store and buys $50 worth of goods with bitcoin. For one reason or another, the store does not exchange BTC for fiat currency right away, and it takes about 24 hours. From there, the price of BTC drops and the $50 becomes $40. The customer keeps everything he bought, but the store ended up losing money. Is this a fair situation? Not everyone thinks like that.
This is what makes countries like Russia important in their own way. They realize the initial purposes of bitcoin and digital currencies and are trying to turn them into usable tools that ordinary people can benefit from.
The country has received much criticism.
Russia has come under severe scrutiny in recent months as the country reportedly invaded its western neighbor Ukraine. For these reasons, members of the US Congress have been tough on Russia, claiming that it is guilty of war crimes and therefore should not be allowed to have any functioning financial system.
Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, for example, has called for cryptocurrency exchanges to reduce their services to people in Russia, with many suggesting further sanctions on the country because they are concerned that Russia may use cryptocurrencies as a means of circumventing current limitations.