Russian IT Firms Lobby for Crypto Payments in Software Exports
Companies developing software solutions for foreign customers are urging Russian authorities to allow them to accept crypto payments. The proposal is part of a package of measures aimed at supporting IT exports suggested by an industry organization to the executive power in Moscow.
IT Businesses Call on Russian Government to Permit Cross-Border Crypto Settlements
Russian companies from the information technology (IT) sector want to be allowed to make and accept crypto payments when working for clients outside Russia. That’s according to a roadmap prepared by Russoft, the association of Russian software developers, and sent to the Ministry of Digital Development, Communications and Mass Media.
The industry organization insists that in order to alleviate the effect of financial restrictions and lower costs, alternative payment solutions are needed, including cryptocurrencies, the Russian business daily Vedomosti reported on Thursday. The document suggests the establishment of experimental legal regimes that would facilitate the adoption of such mechanisms.
The members of the association complain about the difficulties in receiving payments from abroad. Russian businesses have had to deal with harsh sanctions imposed over Moscow’s decision to invade Ukraine which have severely limited their access to the global financial system. Russoft is also calling on Russian authorities to ease foreign exchange controls introduced amid the escalating conflict.
IT is different from many other industries, noted Lev Matveev, member of the organization’s executive board who tried to explain its interest in digital assets. Quoted by the Russian crypto news outlet Bits.media, he elaborated that as most of the products created in the sector do not physically cross the border they cannot be classified as foreign trade commodities, making it impossible for the companies to bypass the currency controls.
Russia has been mulling over how to regulate cryptocurrencies for months. Led by the central bank, most government institutions agree that decentralized currencies like bitcoin should not be accepted as a means of payment inside the Russian Federation, but sanctions pressure has increased support for the idea of legalizing their use in international settlements.
In January, the Bank of Russia proposed a wide-ranging ban on crypto activities but later agreed with the Ministry of Finance that the country “can’t do without cross-border crypto payments.” The ministry has prepared a bill “On Digital Currency” to comprehensively regulate the crypto space which is yet to be reviewed by lawmakers. In the meantime, a draft law on mining, legalizing the use of cryptocurrencies in foreign trade, was also filed in parliament.
Do you expect the Russian government to permit cross-border crypto payments for the IT sector and other industries? Tell us in the comments section below.