Russian lawmakers have approved a bill that will facilitate the implementation of a digital version of the national currency, the ruble. The legislation amends various other laws to introduce definitions and establish procedures related to the launch of a central bank digital currency.
The Russian State Duma passes the digital ruble bill in the first reading
The lower house of the Russian Parliament, the State Duma, has adopted in first reading a bill to introduce the legislative changes needed to realize the digital ruble project. Most notably, it seeks to amend the “National Payment System” law.
The latter will be supplemented by legal definitions related to the Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) issued by the Bank of Russia. The authors also suggest procedures for accessing the state-backed coin platform as well as for opening a digital wallet, reports RBC Crypto.
According to the Vedomosti business daily, the draft proposes terms such as “participant of the digital ruble platform” and “user of the digital ruble platform.” It assigns the role of the only operator to the Central Bank of Russia (CBR), which will ensure its safe operation.
The bill also amends the “Currency Regulation and Currency Control” law. This special revision guarantees the status of the digital ruble as the currency of the Russian Federation and defines other central bank digital currencies as foreign currencies.
Sponsors want to give CBR the powers to process personal data without obtaining the user’s consent and without notifying the body responsible for the protection of this information. This will be done through changes to the Federal Law “On Personal Data”.
The bill was introduced to the State Duma in late December by a group of deputies and senators led by the head of the Financial Market Committee, Anatoly Aksakov. Now the House of Representatives has tasked the committee with “taking into account the need to ensure protection of the rights of personal data holders” when finalizing the document prior to a second reading.
Along with the digital ruble bill, the House also adopted amendments to the Civil Code that classify CBDCs as non-cash money and regulate other aspects such as inheritance. Proposals for further revisions to drafts will be accepted by mid-April. The Bank of Russia plans to start testing the digital ruble with real users and transactions on April 1 and aims to launch it fully in 2024.
Do you think Russia will accelerate the introduction of the digital ruble amid sanctions and financial restrictions due to the war in Ukraine? Share your predictions in the comments section below.
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