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Russian president Vladimir Putin has vowed to ban cryptocurrency payments with a new law that would make paying with digital assets illegal in the country.

The highly-anticipated move follows years of discussion between the Central Bank of Russia and the country’s government on whether to allow cryptocurrencies, like Bitcoin.

However the move could come as bad news to many Russian companies, who are expected to be using crypto as a way to alleviate some of the sanctions imposed on the country following its invasion of Ukraine earlier this year.

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A translation of the law highlighted on the government’s website by Decrypt (opens in new tab) reads:

“It is prohibited to transfer or accept digital financial assets as a consideration for transferred goods, performed works, rendered services, as well as in any other way that allows one to assume payment for goods (works, services) by a digital financial asset, except as otherwise provided by federal laws.”

There have been several propositions with regards to unregulated coins, and much like the Finance Ministry’s proposed regulations first raised in February 2022, Saturday’s law places a ban on using cryptocurrencies to buy or sell things.

A total ban on crypto trading was not enacted, with Russian citizens still allowed to invest in crypto.

Elsewhere in the world, electric vehicle supergiant Tesla is currently accepting Dogecoin payments for eligible products through the use of a third-party ‘Dogecoin wallet,’ while the company has previously expressed trust in Bitcoin, too.

Despite the news, President Putin has previously expressed an interest in crypto, where he proclaimed that Russia had “certain competitive advantages” including its “surplus of electricity” according to Decrypt, which gives the country a powerful foothold in Europe, a continent in which many countries rely on its gas supplies.

Some of the key crypto trading platforms – like Binance and Coinbase – have also said that they will comply with US and EU laws when its comes to operating in Russia.