Russia has made further progress with its Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) initiative as the country is set to develop a digital prototype of the ruble in early 2022 and a pilot program is also set to launch, Bank of Russia Governor Elvira Nabiullina confirmed on Tuesday.
According to Reuters, the Russian Central Bank will decide the future of the digital ruble after launching the pilot program.
The Bank of Russia first revealed its plans to develop a prototype for the digital ruble earlier this year.
After that, Russia aimed to finish the prototype by the end of this year or by next year, without setting any official deadline.
However, the central bank’s interest in a digital version of the ruble was officially confirmed for the first time in October last year, when an advisory paper was published, in which the digital ruble was described as an additional form of money along with cash and non-cash.
Although the Russian Central Bank decided to proceed with the development of the prototype based on the prototypes, it faced some criticism from the consortium of Russian banks and fintech companies.
They pointed to the flaws of the blockchain-based currency model and raised concerns about its use by fraudsters.
Big Decision on Cryptocurrency Mining:
At the same time, the Ministry of Economic Development, the Ministry of Energy and the country’s Duma are pushing to legalize crypto-mining activities, thus introducing appropriate regulations to the industry.
The proposal wants to classify crypto miners as entrepreneurs.
While the Bank of Russia is against regulating the crypto-mining industry, the risks associated with cryptocurrency are behind its stance.
After China crackdown on cryptocurrency mining, Russia is currently the third largest cryptocurrency mining country.
Although crypto mining is not illegal in the country, the tax provisions for the industry are still unclear.
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