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Meeting on using digital technology in finance

October 10, 2017, Sochi

Vladimir Putin held a meeting on the use of digital technology in finance and the implementation of innovative financial tools.

The meeting was attended by Presidential Aide Andrei Belousov, Finance Minister Anton Siluanov, Central Bank Governor Elvira Nabiullina, Central Bank Deputy Governor Olga Skorobogatova and QIWI CEO Sergei Solonin.

* * *

President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, colleagues,

Today, I propose addressing a topic that is relevant not only for our country, not only for Russia, but is probably becoming relevant also for the rest of the world.

I am referring to introducing digital technology in the financial, banking sphere, and using innovative financial instruments.

Modern technology in the banking sphere certainly opens up new opportunities for organisations and citizens, making business activity and everyday life more convenient.

As is known, virtual currencies, also known as cryptocurrencies, are becoming or have already become very popular; in certain countries they are becoming or have already become legal tender, as well as an investment asset.

I would like to draw your attention to the need to use the advantages that are offered by new technological solutions in the banking sphere.

That said, the use of cryptocurrencies also carries serious risks. I know the Central Bank’s position; I have discussed this topic with the Governor on several occasions.

First and foremost, this is an opportunity for laundering illegal gains, tax evasion and even financing of terrorism, not to mention the proliferation scams to which ordinary people can fall victim.

Cryptocurrencies are issued by an unrestricted circle of anonymous entities. Therefore, buyers of cryptocurrencies may be involved in illegal activity.

In addition, there is no security for cryptocurrencies. If the system breaks down or, as it is trendy to say today, if there is a bubble, there will be no entity legally responsible for that. This is a serious matter that we should bear in mind when discussing this topic.

As is known, many countries are looking for ways of regulating the circulation of cryptocurrencies and are beginning to create the necessary legislative framework, a legislative regulatory system.

We need – based on international experience – to build a regulatory environment that will make it possible to codify relations in this sphere, reliably protect the interests of citizens, businesses and the state and provide legal guarantees for using innovative financial instruments.

I would like once again to draw your attention to the need to use the advantages that are offered by new technological solutions in the banking sphere.

At the same time it is important not to create unnecessary barriers, of course, but rather to provide essential conditions for advancing and upgrading the national financial system.

Bearing all these various aspects of the problem in mind, let us discuss this topic today.


October 10, 2017, Sochi