Deputy finance minister of Russia Alexey Moiseev told CoinDesk about the importance of blockchain for the development of finance industry.
Alexey Moiseev assured that blockchain will play a significant role in the future of finance:
The stance towards bitcoin expressed by officials is slightly different, because the digital currency can be used for a variety of purposes, not all of them legal.
Mr Moisеev said that Russian financial authorities closely follow other countries’ experience of bitcoin regulation. He specifically mentioned the measures recently undertaken by the European Union to control illegal money operations.
The position expressed by Mr Moisеev bears similarity with the statement of the Bank of Russia representative Mikhail Myznikov made at National Payments Forum in Moscow yesterday. He said that, notwithstanding the risks, blockchain has all the potential to become a constituent element of the future financial system.
The discussion around cryptotechnologies has been heated up in Russian financial circles since early autumn, when the Ministry of Finance urged to criminalise "money surrogates" (including here bitcoin and the upcoming bitruble). Those who issue and circulate these "surrogates" may spend up to 5 years in prison or will have to pay a significant fine.
At the same time the heads of the nation's largest bank Sberbank and the country's Central Bank appeared to be more supportive towards cryptocurrencies and their underlying technologies.