Russian Central Banks to Seek Ban on Investments in Cryptocurrencies

The Russian Central banks wants to ban investments in cryptocurrencies in Russia, seeking risks to financial stability in the rising number of crypto transactions, two financial markets sources close to the bank said.

Leading cryptocurrency bitcoin fell after the report to $48656 from levels around $49144 seen shortly before.

Russia has argued for years against cryptocurrencies, saying they could be used in money laundering or to finance terrorism. It eventually gave them legal status in 2020 but banned their use as a means of payments.

The Central bank is now in talks with market players and experts about a possible ban. If approved by law makers, it could apply to new purchases of crypto assets but not to those bought in the past, said one of the financial market sources, who requested anonymity due to the sensitivity of the matter.

Another source close to the Bank of Russia said the central bank’s current position was a “complete rejection” of all cryptocurrencies.

In a reply to Reuters’ request for comment, the central bank said it was preparing an advisory report to voice its stance on the issue. It did not comment on specifics.

The annual volume of cryptocurrency transactions carried out by Russians is about $5 billion, the central bank has said S-ET

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