Ukraine legalises bitcoin as crypto donations pass $100m

President Zelensky signs ‘Virtual Assets’ bill into law after originally vetoing in in September

Anthony Cuthbertson
Thursday 17 March 2022 10:11
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<p>Ukraine has received more than $100 million in cryptocurrency donations since it was invaded by Russia</p>

Ukraine has received more than $100 million in cryptocurrency donations since it was invaded by Russia

Ukraine has legalised cryptocurrency in a landmark bill signed into law by President Volodymyr Zelensky.

The “Virtual Assets” bill establishes a legal framework for the use of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, determining their legal status and classification with regards to ownership and regulation.

More than $100 million worth of cryptocurrency has now been donated to Ukraine since Vice Prime Minister Mykhailo Fedorov publicly called for funds to “contribute to the Ukrainian victory as well as support civil people”.

The bill will allow crypto exchanges and companies to legally operate in Ukraine, with full access and support from the traditional financial sector.

“The Ministry of Finance is actively working to amend the tax and civil codes of Ukraine to fully launch the market for virtual assets,” the Ministry of Digital Transformation said in a statement.

“The signing of this law by the president is another important step towards bringing the crypto sector out of the shadows and launching a legal market for virtual assets in Ukraine.”

Alex Bornyakov, Ukraine’s deputy minister of digital transformation, said the new bill will offer “new economic opportunities” to the besieged people of Ukraine.

“We will do our best to bring the bright new future closer as soon as possible,” he tweeted.

A draft of the bill, which passed through Ukraine’s parliament last September with a near-unanimous vote, was originally vetoed by President Zelensky, who claimed at the time that the costs of establishing the regulatory body would be too great.

The signing of the bill on Wednesday moves Ukraine beyond the legal limbo it existed in before with regards to cryptocurrency – it was neither legal nor banned – but it does not go as far as El Salvador, which became the first country in the world last year to officially adopt bitcoin as a legal form of tender.

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