Erik Weijers, 3 months ago

Will Russia authorize international crypto payments?

The Russian Prime Minister has urged government agencies to agree on a coherent crypto policy that would enable international crypto payments. It would have make an end to confusion over the legal status of crypto in the country.

News already broke last week that the Central Bank of Russia sees the use of crypto payments for international trade as inevitable. It is expected that, in consultation with the Ministry of Finance, international crypto payments will be allowed. This must be agreed upon by the various bodies by December 19.

It is quite conceivable that Western sanctions have played a role in this decision. The news is reminiscent of Iran's recent crypto payment of 10 million dollars for an import order. Countries excluded or disadvantaged by the dollar-based global money system will be tempted to resort to crypto.

Citizens no access to crypto

Russia, however, is by no means a pro-crypto country. On the contrary. The Central Bank reiterated that it is still opposed to crypto payments within the country's borders. A law banning the use of crypto to citizens has been in effect in Russia since 2020. Crypto exchanges are illegal.

Now that it allows international crypto payments while banning crypto within borders, the country is in a strange position. No other nation has a comparable policy.

Yet something similar has happened more often in history. For example, for a time in the 1930s, the United States prohibited citizens from owning gold. During the same period, however, international gold trade between the US and other countries continued as usual. It is a form of financial repression of citizens independent of the ability to trade internationally.

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