Russia Considers Allowing Cryptocurrency to Be Used for International Payments

Russia is considering allowing the use of cryptocurrency in international payments, the Interfax news agency quoted a government official as saying on Friday.

"Serious discussions are taking place on the idea of ​​using digital currencies in transactions related to international settlements," Ivan Chipskov, head of the Financial Policy Department of the Ministry of Finance, was quoted as saying.

Russian officials differ on how to regulate the cryptocurrency market and use in the country, with the Finance Ministry opposed to calls by the Central Bank for a total ban.

Although discussions have raged for months, and although the government expects to legalize cryptocurrencies as a means of payment sooner or later, no consensus has yet been reached.

On Friday, Vedomosti newspaper quoted government officials as saying that the Finance Ministry is discussing adding the latest proposal on international payments to an updated version of the bill.

Allowing the use of cryptocurrencies as a means of settling international trade transactions would help counter the impact of Western sanctions that have made Russia's access to traditional cross-border payment mechanisms "limited", Chipskov said.

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