On March 26, Russia’s Deputy Energy Minister Evgeny Grabchak said “the legal vacuum in the field of cryptocurrency mining needs to be eliminated as soon as possible,” according to TASS‘ report. As the Ukraine crisis continues, speculation about Russia’s possible use of Bitcoin mining to minimize the consequences of ever-tighter sanctions has grown.
Evgeny Grabchak says Russia should legalize Bitcoin mining “as soon as possible”
Grabchak emphasized that it would be more beneficial to choose mining sites and free up energy resources at the local level rather than at the federal level, and that this should be handled through regional development plans.
“The legal vacuum makes it difficult to regulate this area and set clear rules of the game. This legal vacuum needs to be [eliminated] as soon as possible. If we want somehow to get along with this activity, and we have no other options in the current reality, we must introduce legal regulation, adding the concept of mining to the regulatory framework.”
Will Russia accept Bitcoin for gas?
Russian State Duma member and Energy Committee chairperson Pavel Zavalny also proposed Bitcoin and national currencies as payment alternatives for energy exports to “friendly nations.”
After Vladimir Putin’s past demand that “unfriendly countries” use the ruble for such deals, Zavalny proposed gold and Russia’s currency, the ruble, as viable payment alternatives for the country’s energy supplies, which the EU declined.
Some experts are concerned that Russia will utilize cryptocurrencies to bypass financial and economic sanctions. Because Ukraine has legalized the cryptocurrency industry and received monetary assistance in digital assets.
The Russian central bank previously called for a cryptocurrency ban before the invasion of Ukraine, and Sberbank, Russia’s largest bank, has now been given a license to trade in digital assets by the central bank.
Bitcoin has managed to break the $47,000 barrier for the first time since January, at the time of writing, BTC is valued at $46,971.