The State Duma Committee on State Construction and Legislation supported the adoption in the first reading the bill amending the Civil Code in connection with the introduction of the digital ruble.
Previously, bills on digital ruble were supported by the Duma Committee on the Financial Market. The documents were recommended for consideration by the State Duma on March 16.
The Constitutional Committee, in its opinion, pointed out the ambiguity in the use of terminology, for example, the term "purse" cannot be used in the Civil Code (the term "digital account" is sufficient). Comments were also made on how many digital accounts are possible to open, as this is not currently regulated in the bill.
In addition, the Committee pointed out that the provision that rights under a digital account agreement cannot be pledged is rendered unreasonable. The need to further clarify the relationship between the operator and users of the digital ruble platform was also noted.
"The State Duma Committee on State Construction and Legislation recommends, taking into account the comments made, that the draft is to be adopted in the first reading," the decision says.
The first bill amends a number of laws in terms of determining the legal status and rules for using the digital ruble, including the rules for the circulation of digital rubles in Russia and foreign countries. Moreover, it is established that the digital ruble is the currency of the Russian Federation.
And the Bank of Russia is legally assigned the status of the operator of the digital ruble platform and the authority to organize and ensure the functioning of such a platform. At the same time, the responsibility of the Bank of Russia for the safety of digital rubles and the correctness of accounting for information on transactions with them is established. It also establishes the specifics of the collection of digital rubles recorded on the digital account (wallet) of the debtor.
The second draft law, under which the committee acts as a co-executor, makes the necessary changes to the Civil Code (CC), which classify digital rubles as non-cash funds and regulate issues related to the conclusion and termination of a digital account (wallet) agreement and the implementation of operations on it, including features debiting digital rubles from such an account.
At the same time, rights under a digital account (purse) agreement cannot be pledged. At the same time, the rights to digital rubles recorded on a digital account (purse) can be bequeathed at the discretion of a citizen. At the same time, the possibility is established for the heirs to receive funds from the digital account (wallet) of the testator to organize his funeral, by analogy with the current procedure for receiving, in such a case, the testator's money in his bank accounts.
The first settlements in the new form of domestic currency will begin on April 1 with the participation of 13 banks, including: VTB, Sberbank, Gazprombank, Promsvyazbank, Rosbank, Alfa-Bank, Tinkoff Bank.
At present, money in the Russian economy exists in two forms: cash and non-cash. The digital ruble does not replace these forms, but is a third, additional form of the national currency. Accordingly, it will be issued by the Bank of Russia only in electronic form.
Like banknotes, each of which has its own unique number, digital rubles will have the form of a digital code that will be stored in a special electronic wallet. This is the similarity of digital rubles with cash (both are marked with unique numbers).
Cashless payment is more convenient than cash, but it binds the payer to a specific commercial bank with its own conditions, tariffs, connection to the payment system, etc. And this is the main difference between the digital ruble and a regular bank account: digital money is not stored in a commercial bank, but directly on the accounts of the Bank of Russia, which guarantees that one token will be equal to one ruble.
As cash, the digital ruble can be used offline, that is, in the absence of access to the Internet. To do this, users of the digital wallet will be able to pre-reserve a certain amount of digital rubles in it, so that they can be used at outlets where payment cards are not accepted or there is no Internet.
Individuals and companies will open accounts with the Bank of Russia through operators - commercial banks that will support payments, provide applications for working with the digital ruble, exchange it for a regular ruble and carry out other banking operations.
The transfer of a digital ruble from one user to another will take place in the form of a simple transfer of a digital code from one electronic wallet to another, without involving any banking organization (through the fast payment system).
However, it will still be possible to make payments in cryptocurrency through the mobile applications of one of the banks that are connected to the platform.
Nadmitov, Ivanov & Partners Law Firm advises on financial law, fintech, and also provides services for finalizing bills on digital currencies.
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