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Minister states restricting Bitcoin in Russia is the "same as banning the internet"

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Elvira Nabiullina, governor of the Bank of Russia, previously stated that restricting Bitcoin in Russia was "quite doable." 

Cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin (BTC) cannot be banned, according to Russia's finance minister Anton Siluanov, while the Bank of Russia continues to urge the authorities to do so. 

A ban on crypto in Russia is the “same as banning the internet, which is impossible,” Siluanov stated at the ministry's meeting with the central bank on Wednesday, as per Forbes Russia. 

According to reports, the finance minister believes that regulating the crypto sector soon is preferable to banning it because it will enable the government to effectively regulate the industry and expand the country's budget through crypto mining taxes.

"What's wrong with that? I don't understand why it should be banned," Siluanov said at the meeting, adding that taxing the market is a simple fix. As per the minister, the state should tax realised profits on the amount of deposited and withdrawn fiat assets.

Siluanov said, “The Central Bank wants to put an outright ban on crypto assets, arguing that this creates risks, primarily for citizens and can “infect” financial institutions, banks as well as create an opaque settlement market.”

He went on to say that the finance ministry recognises these issues and, as a result, thinks it is essential to minimise crypto access by non-professional investors as part of its crypto regulation idea, which was announced in early February. As a result, the minister asserted that the maximum quantity for new investors can be fixed between 50,000 Russian rubles ($660) and 100,000 rubles ($1,300). Siluanov's deputy, Alexei Moiseev, had suggested reducing such purchases to $660.

The authorities did not indicate if the possible limit would apply to monthly investments or any other timeframe. 

Meanwhile, the Bank of Russia opposes allowing non-professional investors to purchase cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, asserting common risk factors such as scams and money laundering. When it comes to mining, the authority has also been quite opposed to crypto, alerting against fake mining schemes of "nonexistent cryptocurrencies." 

Following years of discussion, the Bank of Russia and the Russian government are likely to reach an agreement on crypto regulation in the country by this Friday.

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