As Bitcoin’s popularity continues to grow, many ask how can they acquire Bitcoins. This has become a different result as every country has its own regulations regarding cryptocurrencies and in particular Bitcoins. Russia has been at the forefront of the ban and accepts cryptos. Here is everything you need to know how to buy Bitcoin in Russia.
It is not very easy to buy or possess Bitcoin in Russia as the government has been going back and forth over this issue. Although the use of cryptocurrency was legitimized in 2016, this year the government decided to reverse the decision. It is difficult to understand this love-hate relationship between the Russians and Bitcoins.
However, there is a recourse left to aficionados of crypto-currencies. It is known as contracts for difference or CFDs, which allow people to trade movements in the value of Bitcoin, without having to own them. This could be beneficial as one does not need to worry about security issues such as downloading back-up, encrypting one’s wallet, etc. Traders have the option of speculating and making money off Bitcoin without needing to store their crypto-currencies safely.
One of the better-known CFD brokers where traders can trade Bitcoin CFD is Libertex. To trade bitcoins with CFDs, one has to choose their currency pairing, just like any other form of currency. For instance, if one chooses to pair CFD with Russian Roubles, the XBT/RUB for one month in 2017 would be close to 450,000 roubles. (Apart from BTC, bitcoin’s abbreviation can also be written as XBT).
Buying and Selling Bitcoin in Russia via Exchanges
In a surprising move last year, Russia took a liberal approach to not criminalize mining, buying and selling bitcoin. The cryptocurrency community in the country had started taking steps to promote the use of bitcoin since that period. In August last year, Moscow set up the first offline bitcoin exchange.
Buy and sell bitcoin anywhere around the world comes with their own set of rules and regulations and it is the same in Russia. Here, one could buy bitcoin through cash, credit/debit card, wire transfer as well as PayPal. There were many different exchanges that facilitate to buy and sell. There are a few exchanges that used to support cryptocurrencies in Russia such as CEO.IX, Coin Cafe (a New York-based exchange), Brawker, HitBTC.com, and so on.
CEO.IX is a well know exchange that supports clients from Russia. These are the steps in order to purchase Bitcoin via CEX.IO.
Step 1 — Open a Digital Wallet
A digital wallet is where you hold your cryptocurrencies and interacts others via the blockchain technology. There are many providers of digital wallets, however, it is important to make a deep research before you decide which one is the best for you. Currently, the most popular digital wallets provider is Blockchain.info.
Step 2 — Register & Open an Account
Once you enter CEX.IO website, register and open an account that can provide you with their service.
Step 3 — Receive the 2FA Code
This is the authentication code as well as your password when you access CEX.IO. The code will be generated by an application and will be delivered to you by SMS.
Step 4 — Purchase Bitcoin
Now you can easily purchase Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Note that you can always buy fractions of Bitcoin and CEX.IO allows you to choose fixed amounts with your own currency.
Choose the payment option that is most convenient for you.
In order to complete the purchase, the broker will ask you to verify your identity with documents and various details.
Bitcoin Exchanges in Russia
Elaborating on bitcoin exchanges in Russia, here are some pros and cons to investing in Russian exchanges. They are listed below:
- CoinMama– CoinMama allows customers from every country to buy bitcoin with either credit or debit card and levy 6% charge on every transaction. The advantages of investing with CoinMama is that it is accessible in most countries around the world, highest limits for buying bitcoin with a credit card and is a reliable and trusted broker. The downside is that it charges very high fees among credit and debit cardholders.
- LocalBitcoins- This is an escrow service that helps match bitcoin buyers and sellers. The most common method of payment is cash deposit. Users can also advertise for whichever method of payment they prefer. The pros for using this exchange are: it is easy to use and private, inter-personal trades do not require personal information. The con is that one cannot buy a large number of bitcoins, as compared to other large exchanges.
- Matbea- This is a bitcoin exchange based in Russia and one can fund his/her account by cash deposit or bank transfer. The upside of trading with Matbea, it is one of the few Bitcoin exchanges in Russia and there are many ways to deposit funds. The downside is that the exchange does not offer prices close to the market price and consequently, traders receive less value on their bitcoins.
- Mycelium Local Trader- This exchange helps one find local bitcoin sellers. Once a seller is located, one can meet up in person and complete the transaction. The best part about Mycelium is that it charges absolutely no fees. While the exchange is great for high-density areas, people in low-density areas may face obstacles and may not find sellers.