Russia’s Central Bank has announced that it wants to hire a “cryptocurrency” expert – a massive turnaround for the bank, which earlier this year proposed a blanket ban on all things crypto-related.
In a post on the Russian job search platform Headhunter (HH), the Central Bank wrote that it was looking for a “blockchain developer” with “cryptocurrency” expertise. The bank wants to hire a developer with between one and three years of experience in the field.
The bank explained that the successful candidate would be charged with the “development of analytical materials” and “consultation reports” – as well as “proposals for legal amendments” to laws pertaining to “digital currencies, distributed ledger technology, decentralized finance, and digital financial assets.”
Russian regulators and politicians have often used the term “digital financial assets” as a euphemism for crypto.
The new hire will also be asked to work on “pilot” projects.
Until relatively recently, the bank’s position on crypto was that it should be banned completely – much as is the case in China – and that a digital ruble should be released as quickly as possible.
But the job posting appears to show a possible departure from this hardline stance: The bank especially wants to hear from individuals with experience with the Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Hyperledger Fabric blockchain protocols.
Russian Central Bank to Take a Leaf Out of Crypto’s Book?
The Central Bank’s position on crypto has softened somewhat in recent months – but it still remains at loggerheads with the pro-industry Ministry of Finance.
The ministry wants to regulate crypto and place limits on the amount of money citizens can spend on coins in the space of a year. It also wants to legalize – and tax – crypto mining. But the Central Bank and its long-serving Governor Elvira Nabiullina have remained opposed – creating an impasse that even direct intervention from President Vladimir Putin has failed to resolve.
However, in recent months, the bank has indicated that it is prepared to make some concessions, and may allow certain exporters to sell their goods and services for crypto – providing these coins “do not enter the Russian economic system.” The bank has also indicated it may be prepared to drop its opposition to industrial crypto mining.
But hiring a crypto expert may well prove that the bank is now prepared to go a step further – and possibly incorporate tech developments from the world of crypto in its own operations.