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Russia Postpones Crypto Regulation Bill To April

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The Russian parliament has postponed to next month the second reading of a new bill on cryptocurrency regulation.

The Duma, the lower house, was scheduled to consider the "Digital Financial Assets" to recognize and regulate digital financial assets on March 22, but Anatoly Aksakov, the head of the Financial Market Committee, proposed the delay without citing any reason, ITAR-TASS reported.

The Bill defines such concepts as digital recording, digital transaction, mining, distributed register of digital transactions, digital wallet.

It clearly states that these assets are not a legal means of payment in Russia.

It also creates "conditions for attracting investments by Russian legal entities and individual entrepreneurs through issuing tokens".

The bill also sets the legal basis for conducting Initial Coin Offerings, or ICOs. The draft states that the release of tokens should be carried out through a public offer.

The terms 'token', 'cryptocurrency' and 'smart contracts' were removed from the original draft earlier this month.

According to the State Duma's speaker, Vyacheslav Volodin, the new law will form a crucial part of shaping the future of finance.

Once the bill is passed, it will go to the president for him to sign into law.

While Russia's Central Bank is against the idea of recognizing cryptocurrencies, its President Vladmir Putin supports the bank's stand that cryptocurrencies cannot be a means of payment, settlement or store of value.

In spite of increasing popularity for cryptocurrency transactions, Russia does not have a clear policy in place.

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