The Central Bank of Russia is not ready to admit a bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) to the market, chief regulator Elvira Nabiullina told Russian media. His statement, reaffirming the bank’s hard-line stance on cryptocurrencies that was recently criticized again, came after the launch of Bitcoin ETFs in the United States.
The Central Bank of Russia is not yet open to Bitcoin ETFs
The Central Bank of Russia (CBR) is not ready to allow trading of ETFs based on bitcoin futures contracts, its president Elvira Nabiullina said at a press conference this week, as quoted by the portal of RBC Business Information. Nabiullina made the comment in response to a question of whether Russia’s monetary policy regulator would follow the lead of the United States’ Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and allow bitcoin ETFs to be listed in the country.
The first such investment fund, the Proshares Bitcoin Strategy ETF, launched on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) on Tuesday, October 19, reaching nearly $ 1 billion in total volume before trading closed. . Shortly thereafter, wealth manager Vaneck got the go-ahead from the SEC to offer his own bitcoin futures ETF, and on Friday, Valkyrie’s Bitcoin Strategy exchange-traded fund was listed on the Nasdaq.
Nabiullina’s statement is in line with CBR’s long-standing conservative stance on decentralized digital currencies and crypto-based investment products. In July, the bank advised Russian exchanges to avoid trading in financial instruments linked to crypto assets and their prices. Their registration “entails increased risk of loss for people who do not have enough experience and knowledge,” the authority warned.
The recommendation issued by the regulator also insisted that asset managers should not include cryptocurrency assets in mutual funds. The CBR further called on brokers and trustees to refrain from offering “pseudo-derivatives with such underlying assets to unqualified investors”. Subsequent reports have revealed that Russian lawmakers are considering placing legal restrictions on funds that private investors can invest in crypto.
The “digital financial assets” law, which came into effect earlier this year, partially regulates cryptocurrencies, but officials have indicated that additional legislation is needed to ensure full regulation of the Russian crypto space. The CBR has opposed legalizing the circulation of bitcoin and the like, and views cryptos as banned currency substitutes.
The bank’s attitude was recently criticized by Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska who accused the CBR of turning a blind eye to the growing cryptocurrency market, calling its behavior “childish” in a Telegram article. In July, he pointed out that even El Salvador realizes the need to legalize bitcoin. Deripaska also insisted that the Bank of Russia should have launched the digital ruble two years ago, describing the task as bigger than Gagarin’s space flight in 1961.
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