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Crypto Flipsider News – U.S. Sanctions BitRiver, Russia to Use Crypto for Payments; Coinbase Launch NFT Marketplace, Binance.US Quits Blockchain Association; Commerzbank Applies for Crypto License; Buterin Is Losing Influence in Ethereum

Read in the Digest:

  • U.S. sanctions crypto miner BitRiver, Russia to use crypto as payment tool.
  • Coinbase launches NFT marketplace, Binance.US quits Blockchain Association.
  • Commerzbank applies for German crypto license, Singapore tigtenes regulations.
  • Buterin speaks on losing influence in Ethereum and difficulty in making changes.

U.S. Sanctions Crypto Miner BitRiver, Russia to Use Crypto as Payment Tool

Adding to the 400+ sanctions Russia is facing down due to its ongoing invasion of Ukraine, the United States is moving to crack down on companies operating in Russia’s virtual currency mining industry, including BitRiver. 

The U.S. Treasury Department announced the sanctions on BitRiver and 10 of its Russia-based subsidiaries on Wednesday, April 20th. The Treasury also added Russian commercial bank Transkapitalbank and 40 individuals in the new wave of economic punishments.

Flipsider:

  • As the debate on Russia’s crypto regulation heightens, the Russian Federal Tax Service has proposed allowing entities to use bitcoin and other cryptos in foreign trade.
  • The proposed tax on crypto-generated income would see individuals pay 13%, while legal entities pay 20%.

Why You Should Care

The Treasury emphasized that it is working to ensure that no asset becomes a mechanism for Russia to evade the impact of these sanctions.

Coinbase Launches NFT Marketplace, Binance.US Quits Blockchain Association

The non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace of America’s biggest exchange, Coinbase, is now live, six months after its official introduction. The Coinbase beta marketplace will allow a small group of users to use the platform for the first time.

In addition to buying and selling NFTs, Coinbase’s marketplace will allow users to display their personal profiles and follow accounts whose content will appear in a “For You” feed. Users can also “like” and comment on each other’s posts.

The U.S. arm of the world’s biggest crypto exchange, Binance, has announced that it will be leaving the Blockchain Association – a body created by industry leaders to lobby for the interests of the blockchain industry.

According to a source close to the company, Binance.US is leaving due to differences in “values, goals, and standards.” Binance.US leaves the organization just two years after Coinbase, called it quits.

Flipsider:

  • On leaving the Blockchain Association, Binance.US announced that it would set up its own government affairs team in Washington.

Why You Should Care

Coinbase is adding a social-media spin to NFT trading on its marketplace as it looks to compete with the likes of OpenSea, Rarible, and Larva Labs.

Commerzbank Applies for German Crypto License, Singapore Tightens Regulations

Commerzbank, one of the biggest banking institutions in Germany, confirmed that it is officially planning to enter the digital asset world by applying for a local crypto license in the first quarter of 2022. 

The bank has become the first major German bank to move into cryptocurrencies. The license will enable the bank to offer exchange services, crypto-asset custody, and protection if the application is approved.

A spokesman from Commerzbank confirmed that the bank “applied for crypto custody license in the first quarter of the year.”

Flipsider:

  • Once considered a hub for crypto startups, Singapore is at risk of losing out after tightening regulations for offshore residents and crypto firms.
  • Singapore passed the ‘Financial Services and Markets Bill’, which requires all cryptocurrency firms based in the city-state to be licensed, including those exclusively serving offshore clients.

Why You Should Care

In a recent by Coincub list, Germany, which was ranked fourth last year, overtook Singapore to become the most crypto-friendly country in the world.

Buterin Speaks on Losing Influence in Ethereum and Difficulty in Making Changes

The co-founder of Ethereum (ETH), Vitalik Buterin, one of the strongest voices in cryptocurrency, has expressed his concern about the future of Ethereum, saying that his influence over the project has been declining.

In an interview with Naval Ravikant, an investor and tech entrepreneur, Vitalik Buterin said that his influence wanes every six months. According to him, the decision-making process on Ethereum is now “more vetocratic” than it was three years ago.

Buterin asserts that making changes to the Ethereum protocol is more difficult now than six years ago. Although Buterin is influential in the cryptocurrency space, he doesn’t have the power to single-handedly ensure that his vision for Ethereum comes to be.

He explained that he tried to implement the EIP-4488 as a way to reduce the cost of Ethereum rollups over the short term. According to Buterin, like many of his proposals, the EIP-4488 was not adopted by Ethereum developers.

Flipsider:

Why You Should Care

Buterin has called on the community to exercise their voice to prevent only things of immediate profit being built, rather than what’s best for Ethereum.

This article is for information purposes only and should not be considered trading or investment advice. Nothing herein shall be construed to be financial legal or tax advice. Trading Forex, cryptocurrencies, and CFDs poses a considerable risk of loss

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