No plans for total crypto ban in Russia, lawmaker says

Russia is not planning to outlaw crypto turnover in the country, an official said, emphasizing the need for accurate reporting over sensational headlines.

Russian lawmaker Anton Gorelkin, who serves as the deputy chairman of the State Duma Committee on Information Policy, Information Technologies, and Communications, clarified the country’s stance on cryptocurrency turnover.

In a Telegram post, Gorelkin, who’s also the co-author of a bill aimed at banning crypto exchanges in Russia, said that crypto turnover itself will not be outlawed, criticizing news outlets for making sensational headlines instead of checking the facts.

“The crypto turnover of course will not be prohibited. Setting up crypto exchanges and over-the-counter [OTC] services outside the zone of operation of the experimental legal regime will be under prohibition.” Anton Gorelkin

Gorelkin didn’t rule out the possibility of lifting this restriction in the future, noting that individuals are still free to use foreign crypto exchanges and OTC services as they used to. Explaining the rationale behind the bill, the Russian official cited “geopolitical realities,” noting the potential exposure of businesses to Western sanctions if they decide to operate in the crypto exchange sector in Russia.

However, it remains unclear whether the law would impact numerous OTC crypto services in Moscow. As Bloomberg previously reported, Moscow’s Federation Tower East has become a center for “more than a dozen companies since 2018 that convert cryptocurrencies to cash, judging from the addresses listed on company websites.”

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