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Russian Crypto Exchange Transactions Worth $52B in 2023

Russian Crypto Exchange Transactions Worth $52B in 2023

Tim Alper

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| 1 min read

Russian Crypto Exchange Transactions Worth $52B Last Year – Central Bank

Russian crypto exchange transactions amounted to almost $52 billion in 2023, the nation’s Central Bank has revealed.

The bank says over $51.67 billion worth of Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH) transactions it monitored on “large crypto exchanges” was “potentially” traceable to Russian citizens.

However, by the Central Bank’s own admission, most Russians do not even use major crypto exchanges to trade coins. And that would suggest that the “real” figure could be much higher.

A graph showing Bitcoin prices versus the Russian ruble over the past six months.
Bitcoin prices versus the Russian ruble over the past six months. (Source: Google Finance)

Russian Crypto Exchange Use Dwarfed by P2P Market?

The Central Bank made the crypto claims in its annual report on the Financial Year 2023. The report’s authors wrote:

“Analysis of the cryptoasset market indicates a potentially high level of involvement of Russians in the market. As of the end of 2023, the volume of Bitcoin and Ethereum transactions on the largest crypto exchanges – potentially attributable to Russians – amounted to 4.78 trillion rubles.”

Likely, this figure does not tell the whole picture, however.

Per the bank’s own calculations, the peer-to-peer (P2P) market has become “the main channel for acquiring cryptoassets in Russia.”

The bank has previously stated that “in the first half of 2023,” the average monthly volume of P2P transactions “among Russians” increased “by more than 50%.”

How Does Russian Central Bank Calculate Crypto Exchange Data?

The bank noted that its exchange-related data was based on calculations made using the blockchain analytics tool Prograchniy Blockchain (literally “Transparent Blockchain”).

The tool is the brainchild of Rosfinmonitoring, the nation’s anti-money laundering agency. Rosfinmonitoring developed the tool in 2021, and claims it can trace citizens’ transactions across multiple blockchain networks.

Per a Kommersant report from 2023, Rosfinmonitoring claimed that its tool is so accurate that it even helped police solve a crypto-powered contract killing case.

The tool provides government users with data on both the sender and the recipient of cryptoasset transactions.

In June 2023, a Russian IT firm claimed that almost $300 million worth of crypto trades are made available “every day” on the nation’s P2P market.

The bank, meanwhile, claimed in December last year that it noticed a “drop” in the number of Russians using major overseas crypto exchange platforms to buy and sell crypto.

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