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Russian Allies ‘Very Interested’ in Doing CBDC Business with Moscow – Key Lawmaker

Russian allies are “interested” in using CBDCs like the digital ruble for cross-border settlements, a lawmaker said on February 26.

Per Tass, the State Duma’s Financial Markets Committee Chairman Anatoly Aksakov said that “foreign partners” have told Russian delegates they want to use “digital assets” like Russia’s digital ruble to trade with Moscow.

Russian Allies ‘Repeatedly Express Interest’ in Moscow’s CBDC


Aksakov said that “during negotiations” with Russian allies, overseas leaders had “repeatedly expressed interest in this payment tool.”

EU trade continues to flow to Russia despite sanctions packages https://t.co/3G8Xnktgsb

— Bloomberg Markets (@markets) February 27, 2024

Earlier this week, Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov told the media outlet RIA Novosti that Russia will use its BRICS presidency this year to promote alternative payment “systems.” Siluanov said:

“The agenda that we will promote within the framework of our presidency is the improvement of the financial, settlement, and payment systems. […][We seek] a convenient and safe environment for trading participants within the BRICS: Systems outside politics, and independent of unfriendly Western infrastructure.”

Siluanov also added that Moscow was now ready to start piloting payments made in “digital currencies” with China and Eurasian Economic Union member states.

Aksakov was speaking ahead of the second reading of a bill that will allow Russian firms and their trading partners to use “digital financial assets” as cross-border payment tools.

The Duma was slated to vote on the bill on February 27. The bill appears to be a fast-tracked attempt to speed up blockchain-powered attempts to circumvent USA, UK, and EU-led sanctions.

The State Duma in Moscow, Russia. (Source: Dmitry Ivanov [CC BY-SA 4.0])

Will Moscow Allies Use Digital Ruble?


Russian allies including Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan have all announced plans to accelerate their won CBDC plans in recent months.

Minsk in particular has put great emphasis on its intentions to use the digital Belarusian ruble in cross-border trading.

 

However, analysts said the draft law put before the Duma on February 27 only contains clauses about Russian digital financial assets like the digital RUB. Allies’ tokens are not mentioned in the bill’s text.

Other experts have claimed that “technological barriers” may hamper Russian companies’ efforts to use the digital ruble and other “assets.”

Siluanov, meanwhile, concluded that Moscow intends to “promote the idea” of using “digital currencies” with its “partners.”

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