On September 6, local news agency TASS quoted Alexey Moiseyev, Russia’s deputy finance minister as saying that Russia was working with various countries to create “bilateral platforms” which will help reduce its own dependence on dollars and euros.
Alexey Moiseyev added that “mutually acceptable tokenized instruments” – including stable currencies – will be used on these platforms.
Alexey Moiseyev also suggested that the stablecoins in question are linked to commodities rather than currencies. He stated that these stablecoins can be “pegged to a generally recognized instrument, for example gold, whose value is clear and observable to all participants.“
It is unclear whether these stable currencies will target individuals or institutional and government users. However, given that Moiseyev compares the services being developed to clearing platforms, it seems that individuals are not the target audience for these stable currencies.
It is also unclear which countries Russia might work with.
Today’s news comes just a day after Russia’s central bank and finance ministry agreed to allow cross-border payments in crypto-currencies. They recognized the need to do so, as Russian citizens are already using foreign crypto-currency services.
The Bank of Russia, which has historically been critical of crypto-currencies and digital assets, has stated that this development does not amount to the legalization of crypto-currency payments in Russia. It appears that the ban on digital asset payments, which went into effect last July, is still in effect.
According to TASS, other issues related to cross-border payments will be addressed in the fall session of parliament.
Despite its hostility to crypto and digital assets, the Bank of Russia is exploring the possibility of a central bank digital currency or CBDC. Such an asset could be introduced by 2023.