Russia outlines rules for digital ruble

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Russia’s central bank published draft regulations for use of the digital ruble on Wednesday, as it prepares to launch testing of the new currency with clients.

The draft sets out rules for transactions between the Bank of Russia, as the operator of the digital ruble platform, and the system’s users, according to a statement on the bank’s website.

The document explains the types of digital wallets, the procedure for opening and closing digital ruble accounts, and the list of possible operations with the new currency.

The draft regulation also provides a mechanism for dispute resolution and a procedure for monitoring user compliance with the platform’s rules.

The regulator is accepting comments and suggestions regarding the draft document until July 19, the statement added.

The Russian lower house of parliament, the State Duma, passed a law on Tuesday setting out the legal parameters for the introduction of the digital ruble. The main provisions of the law will take effect on August 1, the regulator said.

The central bank plans to start testing the new currency in transactions with real clients in August, RIA Novosti reported on Tuesday, citing the regulator’s press service. Earlier this year, the central bank said it had expected to begin trials in April.

The concept of a national digital currency was unveiled by the Bank of Russia in late 2020. The new form of money is expected to coexist with cash and non-cash rubles. Unlike virtual currencies such as Bitcoin, the digital ruble is projected to pose minimal risk, as it will be issued by the state monetary regulator and backed by traditional money.

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