Russia May Accept Bitcoin for Oil And Gas Trading Amid Western Sanctions

Russia is contemplating on accepting bitcoin as a payment option for its oil and gas exports in the face of increased sanctions from Western countries over its invasion of Ukraine.

Russia’s Duma Committee on energy stated in translated remarks at a recorded press conference on Thursday that when it comes to “friendly” countries like China or Turkey, Russia is willing to be more flexible with payment options.

Russia May Accept Bitcoin for Oil And Gas Trading Amid Western Sanctions

The buyers’ national currency, as well as bitcoin, are being evaluated as alternate means to pay for Russia’s energy exports, according to Chair of Duma Committee, Pavel Zavalny. Bitcoin has risen about 4% in the last 24 hours to around $44,000. As Zavalny’s words came out, the price of the cryptocurrency skyrocketed.

President Vladimir Putin promised on Wednesday that “unfriendly” countries will have to pay for gas in Russian rubles. Putin’s statement sent European gas prices skyrocketing on fears that the measure will aggravate an already strained energy sector.

“If they want to buy, let them pay in hard currency, which is gold for us, or pay in whatever currency is most convenient for us, which is the national currency,” Zavalny said, echoing the president’s threat from the day before.

Despite the United States’ restriction on Russian oil imports in reaction to Moscow’s assault on Ukraine, sources tell that the European Union is unlikely to follow suit, given its substantial reliance on Russian energy, which is used to heat houses during the winter months.

Nic Carter, the co-founder of Coin Metrics, stated, “Russia is obviously wanting to diversify into other currencies.” He told that Russia had been planning for such a shift since 2014 when it began to sell all of its US Treasury bonds

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