Russia’s Ministry of Finance proposes higher reporting standards for cryptocurrency

The Russian Ministry of Finance is targeting cryptocurrency to crack down on tax evasion and other financial misconduct in a newly proposed amendment to an upcoming law.

The Ministry is proposing an increase in reporting standards to Russia’s law on digital assets, which Russian President Vladimir Putin signed into law in July. Those laws will take effect in January of 2021 in an attempt to cut down on cryptocurrency’s role in money laundering, tax evasion and illegal activities, according to the Russian news site RBC. The original law defines digital currency and prohibits the use of digital currency for payment.  

In addition to that, the newly proposed measures would require crypto users to report their transaction history, digital wallet address and balance if the wallet accrues more than 100,000 Russian rubles (about $1,300). Failure to report a wallet acquiring over 1 million rubles (about $13,000) in a year could be punishable by forced labor and up to three years in prison. 

Using cryptocurrency in financial crimes could also aggravate circumstances and lead to more severe punishment. Over-the-counter cryptocurrency dealers must report all transactions concerning rubles and Russian IP addresses to tax authorities, RBC reports.