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Experts Divided on New Russian Crypto Regulations

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An influential Russian politician has spoken up in favor of the country’s forthcoming crypto regulations rollout – but opposition voices are not so sure that the new rules will do anything to help the crypto sector.

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Per media outlet RIA Novosti (via Prime), Arseniy Poyarkov, a member of State Duma-run Digital Economy Committee and the head of the BusinessDrom analytics center, claimed that a push toward ensuring digital assets are officially recognized as property will reap benefits for much of the market.

The Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin recently stated that the country’s cabinet is close to agreeing on a bill that will see crypto officially recognized under amended property laws, giving tokens a legal footing for the first time.

Poyarkov stated,

“Any legislative movement toward the legal recognition of digital assets, their ownership status and legal rights connected with these is a good thing. It will permit a certain number of market players to come out of the shadows.”

He added that “If [cryptoassets] are recognized as property, then they are not a means of payment. The Central Bank and the government will not recognize cryptoassets as a means of payment. But [property rights] legal status is better than no legal status at all.”

But Poyarkov conceded that some crypto players market may instead choose to “remain in the shadows,” as certain players considered the regulations to be prohibitively “tough.”

Meanwhile, a digital rights group chief has spoken out against the idea of Russian crypto regulation and the government’s plans in a column.

Writing in Novaya Gazeta, Sarkis Darbinyan, co-founder of the Roskomsvoboda Foundation – an organization that seeks to protect the rights of internet users in the country – questioned the point of the Kremlin’s plans.

Darbinyan wrote that the draft legislation that has been drawn up to date contains vague and incomplete definitions of “digital assets” and other terms – and asked what the point of allowing people to own cryptoassets would be if citizens were not allowed to use their tokens to make payments.

He also added that the Russian government is still ill-equipped to monitor crypto transactions and lacks the legal framework it would need to enforce proposed new crypto tax measures.
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