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Top Lawmaker Suggests China and Russia’s CBDCs Are ‘Compatible’

The flags of China and Russia blend into one another.
Source: daboost/Adobe

A leading Russian lawmaker says China and Russia’s CBDCs may be “compatible” and could be used to make international payments between the nations.

Per RBC, the comments were made by Anatoly Aksakov, a member of the State Duma from Chuvashia’s Kanash constituency and the Chairman of the State Duma Committee on the Financial Markets.

Aksakov told attendees at a CBDC-related forum:

“We in the State Duma really hope that [international CBDCs] will be actively used in foreign economic activity. Accordingly, it will be possible to use our digital ruble for international payments.”

On China, the MP said:

“Options for system compatibility can be considered. For example, the Chinese [CBDC] system and our own [could be made compatible] in order to enables conversions between the two digital currencies.”

Aksakov said the tokens could be “used in the economic turnover of our countries [China and Russia].”

The MP added that it was “necessary to introduce a new currency to the country in stages,” a model that Beijing has pursued in the past.

Instead of setting a national rollout date, China’s government has created an ever-expanding CBDC pilot zone for its digital yuan.

Denis Polyakov, the Deputy Director of the Department of the Russian Central Bank’s National Payment System claimed that digital ruble will allow domestic businesses “the opportunity to reduce costs,” as the commission for payments “will be only about 0.3%.”

Polyakov added that ordinary citizens would be able to use the CBDC to “make quick transfers without commission.”

Earlier this month, Russia’s Prosector-General visited Beijing, where he told his Chinese counterpart that the two nations should cooperate on the matter of CBDC regulation.

Beijing is yet to publicly reciprocate this sentiment.

But it is also testing the e-CNY’s cross-border capabilities as China-Russia relations continue to improve.

Russia’s CBDC Push: Chinese Inspiration?

Aksakov is also the chief architect of Russia’s crypto legislation.

However, his efforts to have crypto laws passed have been largely frustrated by an impasse between the crypto-skeptic Central Bank Governor Elvira Nabiullina and pro-industry government ministries.

Nabiullina is one of President Vladimir Putin’s closest allies.

She has previously served as Putin’s economic adviser and Russia’s Minister of Economic Development.

Nabiullina has spoken in favor of enacting a China-style crypto ban and fast-tracking the launch of a digital ruble.

Analysts think the digital RUB could be fully rolled out in 2025, but Nabiullina is hoping to begin a “real-world” CBDC pilot by early August at the latest.