Russia’s Chamber of Commerce advocates for crypto use in cross border payments

An executive from the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry has called upon the government to settle cross-border payments using cryptocurrencies and central bank digital currencies (CBDCs).

Russia advocates for crypto use in cross border transactions

According to a publication by the TASS, the president of the Russian Chamber of Commerce, Sergei Katyrin, has written to the Russian Prime Minister, Mikhail Mishustin, outlining a set of proposals that will boost cooperation with African countries.

Part of the letter reads, “It seems useful to instruct the Ministry of Finance of the Russian Federation, together with the central bank, to ensure providing intergovernmental agreements with African states on the use of national currencies and cryptocurrencies in mutual settlements and payments.”

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The official added that it was necessary to create a special bank facilitating imports and exports and a trust fund to support exports to Africa’s developing economies. Recently, there has been an initiative from some African countries to work with blockchain networks operating in Russia.

There has been concern that Russia could use cryptocurrencies to avoid Western sanctions. The country is still deliberating on a federal cryptocurrency bill prohibiting its residents from making payments using private cryptocurrencies. In early 2021, the country banned crypto use for payments.

In February this year, the Bank of Russia unveiled the trial phase for a digital ruble. The phase will see Russia roll out CBDC transfers for its citizens.

Africa’s blockchain plans

Earlier this week, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Cameroon issued a statement on their plans to adopt Telegram’s TON network. The layer one blockchain has been supported by Telegram’s co-founder, Pavel Durov, but Telegram is not officially involved in the project. There have been plans to integrate the blockchain into Telegram messenger.

The DRC also has individual plans to create a national stablecoin developed on the TON blockchain. Some African countries, including Nigeria, Kenya, Tanzania and South Africa, have mentioned CBDC plans.

In 2021, Ghana announced a plan to create a CBDC that could be used to make offline payments. Such a CBDC could be accessible by all members of the society, including those that cannot access online platforms.

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