Lets examine Russian Policymakers and their approach to Bitcoin….
Russia has long been at the center of the regulatory storm that has surrounded bitcoin and alternative cryptocurrencies since inception. Unlike China, however, which has maintained a resounding ‘against’ stance, and Japan, which has fully supported bitcoin and blockchain integration, the Russian’s have proven far less decisive in their approach.
Even among policymakers at the upper echelons of the Russian government, there seems to be considerable disparity in opinion as to just what role cryptocurrency can, and should be allowed to, play in the nation.
Just a couple of weeks ago, we learned that Russia wanted to only allow accredited investors to buy and sell bitcoin and that this would be achieved though a limited exchange transaction type system.
Fast forward a week and a key policymaker in the Leningrad region put forward a proposal to use some land next to a nuclear power plant to build a huge mining facility.
Now, we’ve just got word of a meeting between finance heads from across Russia and – as expected – the outcome of the meeting is once again mixed.
Anton Siluanov, Russian Minister of Finance, said that he feels that the Russian approach to bitcoin needs to be one that ensures that the nation makes ‘an organized market out of a black market’.Exactly what he means by this is unclear, but the immediate logical interpretation is that he wants to add some sort of centralization to the transaction process – something that proponents will almost certainly be against.
Alongside Siluanov, but seemingly in contrast to the latter, Herman Gref, the CEO of Russia’s largest bank, Sberbank. Said this:
“In my view, it is critically important to determine the role and position of the government and even better to stimulate instead of prohibit the development of groundbreaking technologies, namely the blockchain.”
That seems far more favorable in tone but, again, is a little ambiguous in implication.
One positive seems to be that at least the Russians are discussing integration and adoption as opposed to blocking it outright but exactly what will come of said discussions remains frustratingly unclear for the community within Russia and beyond.