The cryptocurrency industry was designed to prevent Russia’s Oligalhi from using digital currencies to circumvent the sanctions imposed on Russia’s President Vladimirputin’s allies and their companies following Russia’s attack on Ukraine. It is quietly working with US legislators against the law.
The Blockchain Association, a lobbying group representing more than 70 crypto platforms, including Ripple, Crypto.com and Dragonfly Capital, convinces Congress that cryptocurrencies are not being used by wealthy Russians to avoid sanctions. I’m trying. It is cooperating with Forbes Tate Partners, who are lobbying for laws that impose further sanctions on already punished Russians who aim to use crypto as a way to circumvent sanctions. The bill also empowers the Treasury to block US-based crypto trading platforms from doing business with Russian ones.
Two invoices Introduced in the US House of Representatives and Senate, it empowers the Biden administration to ban US crypto exchanges from processing payments from Russia. The bill will also allow US authorities to sanction foreign exchange that processes transactions by sanctioned Russians or businesses.
The law poses a significant threat to the industry, and critics say it is becoming more popular in secret transactions because it cannot be tracked. It will essentially force digital currencies to obey some of the same rules that require federal insurance banks to know their customers, fight money laundering, and report suspicious transactions to regulatory agencies.
According to an email from Group spokesman Curtis Kincaid, the group “separates the facts from the fiction that Congress cannot send large amounts of money via crypto transactions to avoid sanctions.” Says it is useful for. A representative of Forbes Tate Partners declined to comment and introduced the question to CNBC to the Blockchain Association.
Jake Cerbinski, policy director for the Blockchain Association, later said the bill was not aimed at Russian oligarchs, but directly at US crypto companies.
“These bills do not target Russian oligarchs that do not (and cannot) use cryptography to circumvent sanctions, except for @ SenWarren’s crucifixion against techniques she does not understand. For no apparent reason, it targets a good US crypto company. “Chelvinsky said in a tweet after the announcement of this story.
The crypto industry is lobbying as the Biden administration is scrutinizing whether and how to regulate digital assets.President Joe Biden signature A March presidential directive requires regulators to investigate the risks and benefits of cryptocurrencies.
The Blockchain Association spent $ 460,000 on internal lobbyists in the first quarter. this is, 2018, The disclosure record of lobbying shows. The crypto lobby shop said last year it received over $ 4 million in donations from three crypto giants, the digital currency group Kraken and the Filecoin Foundation.
According to a Q1 report, the group is lobbying against Russia’s digital asset sanctions compliance law. The House bill targets Russians and their affiliates who seek to circumvent their own sanctions using cryptocurrencies.Cryptographic industry leaders, digital currencies Avoidance Sanctions.
However, some lawmakers say that digital currencies should be regulated in the same way as banks, as the industry is touting itself as an alternative banking system. The United States has sanctioned a number of Russian-based financial institutions. Central Bank..Treasury recently aimed at Bitcoin Miner I am active in Russia.
“The crypto industry is proud of its position as an alternative financial system, an alternative bank. Banks are sanctioned on the left, right and center, and banks are withdrawing from Russia,” said a California Democrat. John Garamendi is a co-sponsor. The House bill told CNBC in a recent interview. “Therefore, if they come up with their own financial mechanism, they are in the same league and situation as Bank of America and Russian banks.”
The group is also lobbying for ancillary bills sponsored by Senator Elizabeth Warren in the Senate, according to the first-quarter lobbying disclosure report. The bill, entitled the 2022 Digital Asset Sanctions Strengthening Act, has almost the same name as the one introduced by the Democratic Party in the House of Representatives, “imposing sanctions on the use of cryptocurrencies and promoting transactions by Russians. The purpose is. According to the bill summary, sanctions. “
Warren, a member of the strong Senate Finance and Banking Commission, recently told National Public Radio that the bill would provide the Treasury with tools to enhance surveillance of crypto platforms.
“Russia’s oligarchy can continue to use cryptography to move money. Therefore, it only gives the Treasury permission to handle these cryptographic platforms in the same way that banks do. That is, you Can’t deal with people who violate sanctions you need to know your customers and you. “
Warren accused the crypto industry of undermining US national security and sanctions on Russia.
“It’s not surprising that the unregulated crypto industry has deep pockets with lobbyist troops fighting basic rules to keep consumers safe, but they have US national security and Russia. It is shocking to work to undermine sanctions against the United States, “said a statement in Warren’s email.
The Mortgage Banking Association, an advocate for the mortgage finance industry, also opposed Warren’s bipartisan bill, the Crepto Act, by Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, DR.I. Bill Cassidy, R-La.; Roger Wicker, R-Miss, according to the group’s first-quarter report. A representative of the Mortgage Bankers Association did not return a request for comment.
The law “discloses the real estate holdings of thief politicians, thief politicians, and international criminals hidden in the United States, strengthens U.S. money laundering prevention measures, and tracks the luxury assets of thief politicians. The aim is to arm law enforcement agencies with the information they need to do so. According to the press release, the US financial system. “