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Russian PM Says Digital Assets Are ‘Safe Alternative’ in Foreign Trade, Urges for Ruble Payments

Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin has praised digital assets as a payment instrument that could strengthen Russia’s financial independence. The top government official also called for increasing the use of the ruble for international settlements.

Head of Russian Government Sees Digital Assets as Tool Ensuring ‘Uninterrupted Payments’

Digital assets can become an alternative to traditional settlements and facilitate payments for imports and exports, the prime minister of Russia has recently remarked. Quoted by RBC Crypto news outlet, Mikhail Mishustin made the comment during a “strategic session on the development of the domestic financial system.”

In his statement, which was streamed online, the head of the executive power in Moscow insisted that the Russian Federation needs to intensively develop innovative areas, including the introduction of digital assets. He elaborated:

This is a safe alternative for all parties, which is able to guarantee uninterrupted payments for the supply of goods from abroad and for exports.

Russia has been mulling over ways to reduce its dependence on the U.S. dollar for quite some time as part of a policy objective referred to as “dedollarization.” Digital financial assets, a broad term in current Russian law that officials have used to describe cryptocurrencies, have been considered as an option even before the latest sanctions imposed over the war in Ukraine.

A draft law “On Digital Currency” prepared by the Ministry of Finance is expected to more comprehensively regulate cryptocurrencies like bitcoin. “Of course, it will be necessary to integrate the mechanism for the circulation of digital currencies into the country’s financial system,” Mishustin said in late March, discussing the bill.

Later reports have indicated that Moscow may start employing digital coins for settlements with partners in order to circumvent Western restrictions. In June, the Governor of the Central Bank of Russia Elvira Nabiullina admitted that cryptocurrencies could be used in international payments if they “do not penetrate” the Russian financial system.

In his latest address devoted to the key tasks for the Russian government in strengthening the country’s financial independence, Mikhail Mishustin spoke about the need to gradually phase out the use of the national currencies of “unfriendly countries.” The prime minister emphasized on the importance of increasing the share of the Russia ruble in international payments.

Do you think Russia will implement digital assets in foreign trade settlements in the near future? Tell us in the comments section below.