Will Russia be able to use Bitcoin?

A meeting between Russia’s central bank and the nation’s financial representatives is set to take place next week, as they discuss the use of Bitcoins in Russia.

According to Russian newspaper Izvestia, the meeting has been called to set new regulations and guidelines for the cryptocurrency.

Russia is slowly warming to Bitcoin, as the number of people open to using the cryptocurrency has risen within the past year, but this has not always been the case.

At the end of January 2014, Russia’s central bank released its first guidance on digital currencies:

‘‘Russian legal entities providing services for the exchange of ‘virtual currency’ in rubles and foreign currencywill be regarded as having potential involvement in the implementation of suspicious transactions in accordance with the law on the counteraction to the laundering of proceeds from crime and terrorist financing.’’

Despite this statement from the central bank, rules regarding the cryptocurrency soon started to relax, with a Russian court last month overturning a ruling about blocking sites with information about digital currencies.

Russia’s own politicians are open to the use of Bitcoin. In an interview with Izvestia, Alexander Naumov, deputy chairman of the National Council of the financial market said that ‘‘regulating Bitcoin market in the Russian Federation Central Bank will need cooperation with the Ministry of Communications and the Federal Security Service.’’

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