The Bank of Russia intensifies its campaign against private cryptocurrencies
On Friday, the Russian central bank ramped up a campaign against private cryptocurrencies, a day after Reuters reported that the bank wanted to ban crypto investments.
Russian officials opposed private cryptocurrencies for years, claiming they could be used in money laundering or to finance terrorism. Although they gained legal status in 2020, they were banned from being used as payment methods.
In a video, Valeriy Lyakh, Head of the department that combat market misconduct, said that cryptocurrencies were an outright scam and financial pyramid. He said the market was volatile and unregulated.
He adds, "We have a negative attitude towards cryptocurrencies. We definitely do not support any circulation of it in our country."
According to one of the financial market sources, who requested anonymity, the central bank is currently discussing a possible ban with market players and experts. If the ban is approved by lawmakers, it would not apply to past crypto-asset purchases.
According to an article posted in November by RosBusinessConsulting, Centrobank estimates Russians are currently making around $5 billion of cryptocurrency transactions per year. Additionally, it notes Russians are among the most active cryptocurrency traders in the world.
As part of the global trend to develop digital currencies, the Bank of Russia plans to issue its own digital rouble to modernise financial systems, accelerate payments, and counter a potential threat from other cryptocurrencies.
Bitcoin, the most popular cryptocurrency, fell to $48,656 after the report, down from roughly $49,144.
CBW - External Analyst