Russia may soon follow Iran’s lead by using cryptocurrencies for imports, according to the Russian prime minister.
Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin declared at a strategy session on the development of the domestic financial system on Tuesday that the adoption of digital assets is necessary as a “safe alternative” to cross-border payments.
The prime minister added that digital assets provide a good opportunity to ensure continued payments for imports and exports. Mishustin also noted the importance of ensuring the independence of technology infrastructure and cybersecurity for financial institutions, saying:
We need to intensively develop innovative areas, including the adoption of digital assets. This is a safe alternative for all parties that can guarantee uninterrupted payment for the supply of goods from abroad and for export. ”
Mishustin’s comments came shortly after Iran’s Ministry of Mining Industry and Trade approved the use of cryptocurrencies for imports. On Monday, local media reported that the authority has shifted to crypto payments due to the ongoing international trade sanctions against Iran.
Russian authorities have previously considered cryptocurrencies for international payments. In May, Ivan Chepskov, head of the financial policy department of the Russian Finance Ministry, said that the authority is studying the possibility of integrating crypto payments. “The idea of using digital currencies in transactions for international settlements is being actively discussed,” he said at the time.
RELATED: 72% of Russians Say They’ve Never Purchased Bitcoin: Poll
Even the idea of international payments in cryptocurrency received support from the biggest government skeptic in Russia’s crypto space, the Bank of Russia. In June, Bank of Russia Governor Elvira Nabiullina stated that cryptocurrencies can be used for cross-border or international payments but only if they do not enter Russia’s domestic financial system.