Russia to Wait for Clearer Crypto Guidelines From FATF Before Legislating

Dmitry Peskov, President Vladimir Putin’s special envoy for digital and technological development has suggested that the country should not be in a hurry introducing crypto regulations. The comments come at a time when regulatory actions on digital assets are picking up steam in the nation.

He said that legislators should wait for instructions from the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) on digital currencies before regarding the recent version of the draft on crypto regulations. FATF has been working to address possible money laundering and terrorist financing risks from crypto-assets and is expected to come up with its guidelines soon.

“What the situation looks like: a prepared bill is in the State Duma, the industry has criticized it in every way, and is now starting to accept it because it understands that it can be worse, everyone is waiting for the FATF recommendations on money laundering and the role of cryptocurrency. In this sense, the overall regulatory system may be even more stringent if the FATF recommendations are tough,” said Peskov.

The New Law’s Draft

The Russian draft law on crypto was chosen in the first reading by the State Duma in May 2018, and a revised amendment was proposed for consideration last month.

To be passed, the draft will have to go through the second and third readings, be approved by the upper chamber, the Federation Council, and be signed by the president. There is no deadline for consideration of the draft by the Duma, and although there were reports that the legislation could pass the second reading before the end of October, this seems highly unlikely at the moment.

Industry insiders have criticized the draft for its failure to define cryptocurrencies as a legitimate means of payments and for introducing overall tight regulations on tokens and ICOs. Peskov, however, has supported the strictness of the draft.

“You can’t create a regulation for the crypto industry that would jeopardize the very basics of the state. No national state will ever allow uncontrollable emission centers to operate on its territory,” he said.

“FATF needs to answer one simple question: how are we going to identify a user who converts crypto into fiat?” he concluded.

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