Despite the absence of a legal framework to validate the cryptocurrency dealings in Russia, the country has been reported to have at least 52 operating Bitcoin ATM/Teller Machines. According to the data on the leading Bitcoin ATM tracking site, CoinATMRadar, the capital city of Moscow holds the highest number of BATMS at 9 followed by 5 devices in Omsk and Rostov-on-Don among other points of purchases.
CoinATMRadar, a Twitter user tweeted:
”Over 50 Bitcoin ATMs Operate Legally in Russia, Study Finds.”
Another Twitter user DagoBit commented:
“Oh..50? In whole Russia? This is mass adoption!! 😂”
These established BATMs are legal in nature and have all the major cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin [BTC], Bitcoin Cash [BCH], Ethereum [ETH], Litecoin [LTC], Monero, Zcash, Dogecoin and Dash in its system, enabling the users to trade fiat currency with the virtual money.
The exchange rates can be viewed in Russian Rubble, US Dollar, Indian National Rupee [INR], etc., among other fiat currencies. Rusbit dominates the space with a 47% of market share and owns a majority of the machines. Investcoin holds a share of 28% followed by BTC-O-Matic with 19%.
As the legal status of the digital assets in the country is still uncertain, over 20 BATMs were seized last year by the regulatory body, Central Bank of Russia on the context of counteracting illegal operations.
There has been no significant breakthrough since the approval of the previously established draft Bill called – On Digital Financial Asset. The other two crypto bills – On Attracting Investments Using Investment Platforms, and On Digital Rights were also introduced in the lower house of Russian Parliament – State Duma.
Pravel Kasheninninov had earlier called for extensive amendments in the submitted document to fast track the course in order to construct a comprehensive regulatory framework for the cryptocurrency. Following this, wrong terminologies were noted and the draft was sent back to the reading stage last year.
Besides, an experimental regulatory entity had been set up in the third week of January which allowed certain IT and blockchain firms to roll out cryptocurrency transactions.
Russian economist and member of State Duma, Anatoly Aksakov cited:
“The law on the regulatory sandbox, which I hope we’ll adopt during the spring [parliamentary] session, will allow either individual companies or a given industry to use crypto instruments in their economic turnover and business operations in certain regions.”