There may be some light on the horizon for crypto advocates in Russia as Binance joins the Association of Russian Banks to help formulate a regulatory framework.
Binance, the world’s largest crypto exchange by trading volume, is linking up with the Association of Russian Banks to share its regulatory know-how with Russian financial institutions and government as the Russians cautiously venture into regulatory territory.
Binance is the first exchange to venture into working within the banking sector, according to its representatives.
The Association of Russian Banks created a Center for Experts on Digital Financial Assets. The Association of Banks of Russia includes more than 300 banks and financial companies. It covers almost 90% of the country’s banking infrastructure. Olga Goncharova, Director of Binance in Russia, will head up the center.
In January, she joined Binance to add some impetus to compliance efforts in Russia. The new center will foster conversation between cryptocurrency experts, Russian authorities, and lawmakers. Binance will be amongst the early experts to offer advice. According to Gleb Kostarev, Binance’s Eastern European Director, the exchange has a good history of global cooperation with regulators. He said, “I am sure that our developments, our expertise will be positively received by the Russian banking community.”
Earlier, Kostarev said that Russia was an important conquest for Binance. According to the Central Bank, the annual volume of cryptocurrency transactions sits at approximately $5B.
Finance ministry advocates regulation
The consensus between many institutions is that crypto should be regulated, not criminalized in Russia. This is in contrast with the Russian central bank’s blanket ban proposal. The bank believes that regulating cryptocurrencies is not feasible and wanted to restrict mining and trading due to concerns over financial stability.
Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said that crypto should be legalized and taxed. Furthermore, he said banks and bourses should identify investors in the cryptocurrency market and broker for them. Siluanov said his ministry would help identify crypto traders, separating them as “white” market operators and “grey” market operators. The finance ministry would also permit law enforcement the power to follow money trails and transactions.
The treasury ministry is drafting two laws for the Russian crypto economy. Russian newspaper Kommersant revealed in early February 2022 that the world’s largest crypto exchanges are prepared to work in the Russian Federation under the new laws requiring them to register as legal entities.