Russia has taken another progressive step in the pursuit of the introduction of its central bank digital currency (CBDC). Today, an official government document indicated that President Vladimir Putin has approved the digital ruble bill. Owing to that, the digital ruble law will come into play by August 1, 2023.
According to the new law, the Central Bank of Russia will have the power to take charge of the CBDC initiative. Owing to that, by August 2023, the apex financial institution in the country will commence the inaugural digital ruble pilot program with regular consumers. Further, the responsibility of the Russian Central Bank per the new law will see it reserve the sole right to store the virtual currency.
Meanwhile, according to the description of the new law, the virtual ruble will become a means of payment and money transfer. Also, the newly signed legislation stated that the CBDC isn’t an investment instrument. It is worth mentioning that the digital ruble will serve as a third type of legal tender in Russia. The CBDC will be utilized as a means of payment alongside cash and non-cash rubles.
Despite Russia’s attention to the digital ruble, the Kremlin is yet to come up with a regulatory framework for the crypto landscape in Russia. It is worth mentioning that legislation on the virtual ruble swiftly became law while legislators failed to pay attention to the crypto market.
However, crypto enthusiasts saw flashes of the crypto regulatory framework when State Duma official Anatoly Aksakov in May 2023, pledged to approve four bills about crypto mining and taxation. Despite enjoying huge prominence then, discussions on the bills haven’t moved forward.
How top officials reacted to the introduction of the digital ruble
Prior to the introduction of the digital ruble, the Governor of the Central Bank of Russia, Elvira Nabiullina, provided more insights into the utilization of the virutal ruble. The Governor emphasized how the utilization of the digital ruble will not be forced on the citizens of Russia. Elvira Nabiullina explained how citizens of the country will enjoy the freedom to decide on the adoption of the CBDC.
In her words, the Governor of the Central Bank of Russia said the Kremlin is hoping that the initiative will be more convenient and cheaper for individuals and organizations. She registered hope in how the ease that comes with the embracement of the digital ruble will convince users to utilize it. The Deputy Governor of the Bank of Russia reflected on the submission of Elvira Nabiullina. The Deputy Governor said that the Kremlin doesn’t expect the wide-range adoption of the digital ruble to surface before 2025 or in 2027.