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ICO Legislation by Russian Parliament

24 Jun 2019   #Ethereum

An ICO Legislation Soon to Be Adopted by the Russian Parliament

The Russian Parliament, also known as the Russian State Duma, is about to bring a major change to the way the country views digital currencies and the ICO token sale model. The change is set to come due to the pending approval and adoption of a new bill, which will define the use of cryptocurrencies within the country. According to one Russian official, the bill is expected to be adopted within the next two weeks.

Russia's new crypto bill

The news of the new bill came recently and was shared by a local news media known as TASS. TASS published the story two days ago, on Wednesday, June 19th. The report also quotes the country's deputy finance minister, Alexei Moiseev, who revealed that the Parliament is supposed to go through the second reading of the bill.

The Bill, named "On Digital Financial Assets." is actually a part of a larger set of three bills that were introduced to the parliament back in 2018. The others were known as "On Digital Rights," and "On Attracting Investments Using Investment Platforms."

As for the current bill, it includes two sections, one about the general matters in regard to digital assets, and the other that specially addresses the ICO (Initial Coin Offering) token sale model.

The model made a surprising comeback after most believed that it went extinct back in 2018. As the bear market continued, and the so-called 'crypto winter' became ever stronger, investors were unwilling to purchase new, high-risk tokens. Further, as most of them were weak, scams, or deemed securities by the regulators, many were avoiding them at all cost.

Then, as the prices started seeing recovery in 2019, the ICO model re-emerged, and the need to have it regulated in countries around the world became more important than ever. The new bill will finally see to it that it does receive the necessary attention.

The bill managed to pass its First Stage hearing, and it received an unexpected amount of support, with 410 out of 411 deputies approving it. This allowed it to have the second reading, although there were several suggestions in regards to its improvement after the first reading.

Changes to the bill

The Russian government was also asked to revise the bill by FATF (Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering). Their suggestion was to either deduct some phrases or to include additional ones. This was necessary as it was deduced that some highly relevant phrases were missing. They were crucial in order to properly define several major crypto-related concepts, including tokens, cryptocurrencies, and crypto mining.

At the moment, the bill still includes ambiguous and general terms and concepts, including digital rights, digital financial assets, monetary claims, rights to equity securities, and alike.

It is possible, and also highly likely that the second reading will introduce new provisions and concepts, such as a moratorium on the taxing of miners. Meanwhile, the country's Central Bank had its own suggestions in regards to the bill, proposing that an investment limit for individual investors get included. This limit may also be mentioned during the second reading.

As for the ICO law itself, it is likely not going to be included, as it was already a part of the approved law in regards to crowdfunding. Finally, if the bill sees the approval, it will mean that the parliament still managed to respect and complete the request by the country's President, Vladimir Putin. President Putin previously instructed the Duma to come up with crypto regulations by July 1st of this year. For quite some time, it was questionable whether or not this can be achieved. However, the new development confirms that his request will likely come to a realization.

Author: Ali Raza for

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