Bitcoin Mining in Russia Still Might Put People in Jail

According to Elina Sidorenko, the head of Russian Central Bank’s working group on cryptocurrencies, Russian legislators intend to make mining regulation as friendly as possible, however, selling mined bitcoins still might people to jail.

Speaking at Blockchain & Bitcoin Conference Russia on April 19, she stated:

“We want to establish the most acceptable and favorable conditions to go on par with Japan in terms of rate of increase.”

Still, the legal status of mining is not defined in Russia. According to Elina Sidorenko, if a person mines cryptocurrency using the power that he or she pay for, they are as clean as a whistle.

“You may brush your teeth, do pushups, or not brush your teeth but tell everyone you do. As long as you don’t sell your clean teeth and don’t sell the mined money it’s totally up to you. As long as you don’t import products into the exchange zones or the economy, you’re as clean as a whistle. They ask us what we’re going to do with companies that mine money. The answer is simple: the same what we do with companies knitting socks,” she explained.

Still, Elina Sidoreno noted that as soon as a miner gets revenue from their work, i.e. sells the cryptocurrency, they will automatically become subject to accusations of illegal entrepreneurship as registering such company is virtually impossible due to lack of any registration rules for mining companies.

Last summer, Russian officials discussed the issue of mining. Back then, deputy minister of finance Alexei Moiseev stated that the discussion of laws prohibiting issuance and usage of money surrogates was underway, however, mining wasn’t likely to become subject to said prohibitions.

Elina Sidorenko recently stated that products made with blockchain have to be introduced into the legal terrain while the technology itself should remain beyond any regulatory framework.