Russia’s Minfin mulls crypto trades on stock exchanges for select investors only

Russia’s Ministry of Finance is reportedly working on allowing stock exchanges to open crypto trades, but restrict access to a limited group of “highly qualified” investors.

Russia‘s Ministry of Finance, also known as Minfin, is exploring measures to permit crypto trading on stock exchanges as the country is moving closer to legalizing crypto payments for cross-border trades, Russian state news agency Interfax reports, citing sources close to the matter.

The report notes that the ministry is mulling a mechanism that would allow conducting trades with digital currencies, but for “highly qualified” investors only as Russia’s central bank, the Bank of Russia, still continues to oppose full crypto legalization.

As Interfax notes, the initiative aims to facilitate digital currency trades while navigating regulatory complexities, aligning with Russia’s prime minister Mikhail Mishustin’s 2022 push to enable cross-border crypto settlements. As per sources close to the matter, the Minfin suggests recognizing cryptocurrency as a commodity in a bid to navigate regulatory complexities.

The ministry’s proposal comes shortly after reports surfaced saying that the Bank of Russia might be considering approving stablecoins for cross-border trades as local businesses explore alternative methods to conduct trade with China amid sanctions.

In an interview with Russia’s state newspaper, central bank deputy governor Alexei Guznov said the proposal is under discussion, adding that the eventual goal is to regulate the entire process chain that would enable individuals to “transfer these assets [stablecoins] into Russia, accumulate them, and use them for international payments.”

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