Russian Duma to Adopt Second Reading of Crypto Bill in Two Weeks

The Russian State Duma will adopt the second reading of legislation that regulates crypto-related activities in the next two weeks, local news agency TASS reports.  The state-run outlet quoted the deputy head of the Ministry of Finance Alexei Moiseev as saying that deputies now have until early July to propose amendments before they proceed to the final adoption of the three bills tailored to regulate different aspects of the crypto industry in the country.

In May 2018, the lower chamber of Russia’s parliament passed the first reading, almost unanimously, with 410 deputies voted to approve the bill at the hearing, and only one voted against it.

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The second reading is when amendments are finalized, after which the bill goes to the upper house, the Federation Council, before being signed into law by President Vladimir Putin.

As reported, the proposed legislation incorporates two laws “the crowdfunding law, including the ICO, and the law on digital financial assets.” Let’s recall that three bills hit the house floor in the first reading under the names “On Digital Financial Assets,” “On Attracting Investments Using Investment Platforms,” and “On Digital Rights.”

FATF orders amendments in terminology

The bill “On Digital Financial Assets” deals with cryptocurrencies, as well as blockchain-related technologies such as smart contracts, and mining. Overall, it introduced legal concepts like “digital right” and “smart contract” and defines cryptocurrencies and tokens as property, not as legal tender. It also establishes the rules governing ICO projects.

Some amendments may be introduced in the second reading, including a moratorium on the taxation of miners. The Russian central bank also proposed to limit the number of permissible investments in digital financial assets to individuals.

The State Duma postponed the final stages of adoption of the draft law, which should have reached its second reading last year, due to requirements from the Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering (FATF)

Specifically, the FATF told Russian lawmakers to expand the terminology of the regulation bill, which is already lacking major key concepts such as crypto mining, cryptocurrencies, and tokens. Instead, it uses different terms such as digital financial assets, including digital rights, as well as monetary claims and rights to equity securities.

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