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The chief internet advisor to Russian President Vladimir Putin has announced the creation of a new association focused on blockchain and cryptocurrency, reports say.

According to local news source RNS, Herman Klimenko revealed the new group – the Russian Association of Blockchain and Cryptocurrency (RABIK) – yesterday during an industry discussion regarding the technicalities of initial coin offerings, or ICOs.

Set up to promote blockchain technologies in "government and commercial structures," the association will also work to develop a dialogue with regulators over the "legitimization" of the technology, RNS said.

According to a statement by the Institute for Internet Development (IRI), RABIK is aimed at blockchain technologists, miners, cryptocurrency holders and ICO investors, and will allow participants certain advantages in the industry.

The IRI specified:

"Participants of the association, among other things, will be given various preferences, including from manufacturers of equipment for creating cryptocurrencies, the opportunity to present their technologies to potential consumers and participate in major state events,"

Blockchain discussion in Russia is currently in full swing. Conversations are underway as to whether to implement a nationwide cryptocurrency, with First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov pledging his support. 

Taking a more severe stance, Russia's deputy finance minister, Alexei Moiseev, stated on August 28 that while he felt bitcoin was too unsafe to be traded by civilians, it could be traded on regulated exchanges.

Bitcoin in Russia image via Shutterstock

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