By Bogdan

Russia’s General Prosecutor has recently published a press release
announcing that the official currency of Russia is the ruble and that,
according to Article 27 of the Federal Law “On the Central Bank of the
Russian Federation (Bank of Russia)”, the release on the territory of
the Russian Federation of surrogates is prohibited. This includes the
digital coins, such as Bitcoin which are “coin substitutes and therefore
“cannot be used by natural or legal persons.”

The Russian authorities state the digital coins are dangerous as they
are speculative and could be used for money laundering.

Russia follows and exceeds China which, in December 2013, interdicted
the financial institutions to propose any services related to
currencies, but left private citizens to participate, at their own risk,
in the purchasing/selling of this coin on the Internet, which has lead
to a serious drop of the Bitcoin relative to the yuan.

In Europe, Germany has recognized Bitcoin as an official currency
(private money) while France is reserved. The Bank of France issued a
memo in December 2014 emphasizing the dangers of using Bitcoin and
proposing regulatory ways.

According to Andrea Monti, under the Italian law, Bitcoin is neither a
currency, nor the equivalent of check or a credit card. It is a good
thing that people freely chose to put some value to. A Bitcoin could be
considered an immaterial good that can be traded as a quid-pro-quo with
other Bitcoins or different things.

The European bank authority has also shown some reserve and pointed out
the risks related to the Bitcoin exchanges.

Russia eradicates Bitcoin from its territory (only in French,
10.02.2014)
http://www.01net.com/editorial/613760/la-russie-bannit-le-bitcoin-de-son-territoire/

Russia Says Bitcoin Should Be Avoided [Updated] (7.02.2014)
http://techcrunch.com/2014/02/07/russia-bans-bitcoin/

General Prosecutor’s Office of the Russian Federation held a meeting on
the legitimacy of the use of anonymous payment systems and
kryptocurrency (only in Russian, 6.02.2014)
http://www.genproc.gov.ru/smi/news/genproc/news-86432/

The Legal Status of Bitcoin in Italy (29.01.2014)
http://blog.andreamonti.eu/?p=335