Russia’s Finance Ministry said an upcoming bill to regulate cryptocurrencies will pay “special attention” to mining, citing vast potential in the country for growing the activity. The bill, which was presented to the government in February, is expected to be finalized in the near future.

The comments come in the wake of several calls from Russian officials to promote the adoption of cryptocurrencies, in order to alleviate the pressure of strict economic sanctions. The United States and its allies have blocked Russia from most of the global financial system over its invasion of Ukraine.

The move saw inflation skyrocket in the country, while the ruble collapsed.

Mining a point of focus for Russian ministers

Russia’s proposed bill still intends to ban the use of crypto as a payment option. But it will establish a comprehensive regulatory framework for investing in the space and promote activities such as mining.

While the finance ministry appeared to be unanimously in favor of industrialized crypto mining, there appeared to be some disparity over whether individuals should be allowed to mine from their homes.

We believe that it is necessary to concentrate on the development of industrial mining, but it probably does not make sense to ban household mining. In the near future, we will finalize our bill, which is already on the site of the government apparatus, and we will pay special attention to mining.

Alexei Yakovlev, deputy director of the Finance Ministry’s financial policy department.

Yakovlev made the comments during a roundtable on crypto mining in Russia, news agency 1Prime reported. He also said that the proposed crypto bill will attempt to strike a balance by maximising economic feasibility, while minimizing risks from money laundering and other illegal activities in the space.

Russia a crypto powerhouse

Russia was poised to become a crypto hub before its invasion of Ukraine. The country’s abundant energy resources, coupled with its cold climate, make it an ideal destination for mining crypto.

Russian crypto adoption had also surged in recent years, with a pre-war figure showing Russians held 12% of the world’s total crypto, or roughly $240 billion.

But given that economic sanctions have blocked Moscow from the key technological imports needed for mining infrastructure, it is unclear how the country intends to become a mining hub under the current circumstances. Russia’s central bank has also repeatedly called for a blanket ban on crypto.

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