As crypto usage grows around the world, the implications are that its use will begin to affect global events in countries around the world.
Russia has attacked Ukraine in recent days for a variety of purposes, among those of Ukraine’s continued efforts to join NATO and natural resources. Many countries, notably the European Union, have placed significant economic sanctions on Russia in retaliation to the attack, which has been widely condemned.
Yet, because the Russian government may be able to evade the sanctions by using cryptocurrencies, these restrictions may not have the implications envisaged. This prospect has encouraged Christine Lagarde, President of the European Central Bank (ECB), to call on legislators to support a crypto regulatory structure.
On Friday, February 24, there was an informal gathering of economics and finance ministers, where Lagarde made this statement in response to a journalist’s query about Russia possibly adopting crypto to evade several of the sanctions.
She emphasized that any sanctions placed on Russia by European legislators will be implemented by the ECB. The ECB president, on the other hand, acknowledged that cryptocurrencies can be leveraged to go over any restrictions put on Russia, and asked policymakers to reform the current crypto regulatory environment.
Legarde stated that “whenever there is a ban or prohibition or a mechanism in place to boycott or prohibit, there are always criminal ways that will try to circumvent the prohibition or the ban.”
Legarde went on to say that Markets in Crypto Assets (MiCA) must be rushed quickly so that a regulatory system can be established within which cryptocurrencies may be apprehended. The MiCA is a set of regulations that encourages innovation while also maximizing the possibilities of virtual assets while simultaneously safeguarding investors and sustaining financial stability.