Russian lawmakers approve first reading of draft laws establishing CBDC regulation, issuance

In its first reading on March 16, the Russian Duma approved a bill establishing a system for issuing and regulating Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs), according to local media reports.

The parliament also approved the first reading of a bill that would change the Russian Civil Code and define the digital ruble as a “non-cash currency.” It also establishes rules for inheritance of wallet contracts and digital currencies.

The two bills primarily cover regulatory gaps resulting from the digitization of currencies.

Both bills now go through a review process and are finalized for a second reading based on feedback from legislators. A second reading will take place in the coming months.

Personal data protection

The current version of the bill establishing the CBDC system includes a proposal to change the law and authorize the Central Bank of Russia, the issuer of the digital ruble, to process users’ personal data without their consent.

Lawmakers, however, disagree with this idea and believe it undermines citizens’ rights to the privacy and protection of their personal data.

Parliament said it had instructed the Financial Markets Commission to finalize the bill for its second reading and ensure personal data is adequately protected in the new digital ruble system.

digital ruble imminent

The draft establishes the central bank as the sole issuer of the digital ruble and gives regulators additional powers to ensure proper oversight.

Under the draft, the digital ruble issued by the Central Bank of Russia will be considered the official representation of the national currency, and all foreign digital currencies issued by the central bank will likewise be considered the official national currency.

This law establishes the basic framework of the digital ruble. This includes setting up a platform to issue CBDC and developing a wallet to store it. The draft also defines procedures and rules for participants to access the platform.

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