Amid regulatory uncertainty for cryptocurrencies in Russia, the country has taken a step toward legalizing these assets. The Ministry of Economic Development of the Russian Federation drafted a bill that would allow testing cryptocurrency and blockchain projects within a special regulatory environment – a regulatory sandbox.
According to a March 24th report by local news agency Izvestia, the bill was presented to the State Duma – the lower house of the Russian Federal Assembly in mid-March. According to the text, the experimental law refers to digital technologies incorporated in eight sectors. They include the following sectors: health, financial markets, trading, transportation, distance learning, construction, manufacturing and government services.
In this way, the bill may release experimental tests of items such as unmanned vehicles, remote diagnosis and use of personal data without written consent.
As a result, projects involving cryptocurrencies and blockchain that are part of this group would receive regulatory relief regarding the minimum size of capital, reserve funds and reports. With this, users would be exempt from the country’s foreign exchange law. According to the Ministry, the Bank of Russia – the country’s central bank – will act as a financial market regulator within the regulatory sandbox. According to information from Izvestia published in CoinTelegraph, the bank refused to confirm whether it supports the initiative.
Conflicting news in Russia’s cryptocurrency environment
It is worth noting that the news are released shortly after a Bank of Russia executive declared that the country’s digital asset legislation will prohibit the issuance and circulation of cryptocurrencies. According to the source, the Russian law “On digital financial assets” would prohibit almost everything about crypto except withholding.
Also as reported by Cointelegraph, the project delayed several steps after the first presentation, which was held in January 2018. In addition, Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered the immediate adoption of the project twice since its inception, without succeeding.
Brazil also has crypto regulatory sandbox
The Special Secretariat of Finance of the Ministry of Economy, the Central Bank of Brazil, the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Superintendence of Private Insurance issued in June last year a joint statement making public the intention to implement a regulatory sandbox model in the country. The subject was in public consultation, but made important progress.