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State Duma expanded the definition of “digital assets”

Russia’s State Duma decided to broaden the definition of “digital financial assets” in the related draft law scheduled for the second reading in January-February 2019. In the new revision, the term comprises cryptocurrencies, tokens, digital rights and obligations. The alternative definitions were drafted by the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs (RUIE) and the Russian Association of Blockchain and Cryptocurrency (RABAC).

Head of the State Duma’s Committee for Financial Market Anatoly Aksakov revealed to RBC agency that Russian legislators had amended the definition of digital financial assets in the said draft law.

Digital financial assets now refer to any rights formalized by means of blockchain, not just securities and monetary claims.

The revised definition reads as follows:

“Contracts and torts, and any other rights, including monetary claims, exercise of rights in accordance with issued securities, exercise of right to claim their transmission which are enshrined in the issuance order under this Federal Law, issuable, accountable and circulated through registries in a distributed ledger-based information system are recognized as digital financial assets.”

Last month, the adoption of the draft law “On Digital Financial Assets” was postponed due to the risk of conflict with existing legislation. The State Duma reportedly plans to consider it in the second reading in January or February 2019.

While some blockchain industry stakeholders greet the new revision, others believe that the new definition creates uncertainty and will require supplementary legal acts. According to experts, cryptocurrencies and tokens will be regarded as digital financial assets, should the draft law be adopted.

Back in October, the previous revision of the draft law was heavily criticized by the president of RUIE Alexander Shokhin.