Prosecutor General’s Office Wants to See ‘Cryptocurrency’ in Russian Law

Prosecutor General’s Office Wants to See ‘Cryptocurrency’ in Russian Law

The Prosecutor General’s Office of the Russian Federation has insisted that the term “cryptocurrency” should be added to the country’s legislation. The move would allow authorities in Moscow to confiscate digital assets that have been involved in criminal activities.

Russian Prosecutor General’s Office Prepares Amendments Allowing Seizure of Cryptocurrency


With cryptocurrencies being only partially regulated through the law “On Digital Financial Assets,” work is underway in Russia to adopt legislation introducing comprehensive rules for the turnover of bitcoin and the like. The Russian Prosecutor General’s Office has joined these efforts as it wants the term “cryptocurrency” added to the legal texts.

“We have developed amendments to a number of regulatory legal acts so that cryptocurrencies in illegal circulation are not only recognized as а subject of a crime, but there’s also a legal possibility of their arrest and confiscation,” Russia’s Prosecutor General’s Igor Krasnov said in an interview with RIA Novosti news agency.

Russian lawmakers are mulling over other legislative changes to establish a proper legal framework for cryptocurrencies. A number of activities related to digital coins remain outside the scope of the current law, including taxation, mining, and payments, for example.

Calls have been mounting among officials in Moscow to recognize cryptocurrency mining as an entrepreneurial activity and tax it accordingly. At the same time, the Central Bank of Russia (CBR) remains opposed to the legalization of digital currencies as a means of payment. The regulator claims these represent “money surrogates” that are banned in Russia.

The monetary authority is currently developing a digital version of the national fiat, insisting that’s exactly what the Russians need. The digital ruble will provide а low cost and reliable payment solution that also protects personal data, the head of the CBR, Elvira Nabiullina, promised in November. Bank of Russia is planning to commence trials for the CBDC in January 2022.

Last month, the Russian Prosecutor General’s Office also proposed recognizing cryptocurrency and other virtual assets as property in the country’s Criminal Code. Igor Krasnov explained in the State Duma, the lower house of parliament, that the legal definition will be used in court proceedings.

Krasnov also revealed that his department has already drafted a bill that would regulate the matter and expressed hope that lawmakers would support it. Digital currencies such as bitcoin have been recognized as property under several other Russian acts like the laws on bankruptcy and enforcement proceedings, the anti-money laundering legislation, and the country’s anti-corruption law.

Do you expect Russia to add the term “cryptocurrency” to its legislation? Share your thoughts on the subject in the comments section below.

Bank of Russia Rejects Provision of Crypto-Related Financial Services

Bank of Russia Rejects Provision of Crypto-Related Financial Services

Russia’s central bank has voiced opposition to the provision of financial services related to cryptocurrencies. The monetary authority believes such offerings would go against the interests of Russian investors as they are highly risky.

Central Bank of Russia Unwilling to Allow Financial Services for Crypto Assets

The Central Bank of Russia (CBR), known for its hardline stance on the legalization of cryptocurrencies, has dismissed a call by members of the financial sector to authorize the provision of crypto-related services. The regulator announced its position during a meeting with representatives of the industry, held to discuss the prospects for the development of the Russian stock market.

According to a recently published announcement, the financial businesses raised the question of allowing crypto investment in the Russian Federation. Responding to their suggestion, the monetary policy regulator stated:

According to Bank of Russia, the provision by financial institutions of services related to operations with crypto assets and derivatives on such assets does not meet the interests of investors in the financial market and carries great risks.

The press release further reveals that the central bank has also turned its back on the industry’s proposal to expand the practice of issuing Russian financial instruments in foreign fiat currency.

Bank of Russia has consistently maintained a conservative view regarding the status of the Russian ruble as the only legal tender in the country which it wants to preserve. The CBR remains opposed to permitting the free circulation of bitcoin and the like as well as their use in payments.

The monetary authority has often referred to cryptocurrencies as “money surrogates” which are banned under current Russian law. It’s also working to develop and issue its own digital ruble with trials expected to begin as early as January 2022, after the completion of the platform’s prototype by the end of this year.

While cryptocurrencies remain only partially regulated in Russia through the law “On Digital Financial Assets,” which went into force in early 2021, their popularity as an investment option has grown significantly. Survey results released by the CBR have shown that cryptos and other alternative assets form over half of the portfolio of non-qualified Russian investors.

In July, Bank of Russia advised domestic stock exchanges to avoid the trading of financial instruments tied to crypto assets and their prices. Their listing “entails increased risks of losses for people who do not have sufficient experience and knowledge,” the authority warned.

The bank also insisted that asset managers should not include cryptocurrencies in mutual funds and called on brokers and trustees to refrain from offering “pseudo-derivatives with such underlying assets to unqualified investors.” Russian lawmakers are considering restrictions on the funds private investors may put into crypto.

Do you think Bank of Russia can change its stance on crypto investment in the future? Share your expectations in the comments section below.