Russia still plans on launching the crypto-ruble in the near future.
For a while now, we've been waiting on Russia to launch its crypto-ruble. Recently, the head of the Committee on the Financial Market in Russia stated that, "The crypto-ruble is on its way, but not in the coming year. Russia has also hinted that blockchain technology can transplant traditional payment systems.
By this they are surely referring to the debate on whether or not SWIFT should be banned in Russia, as part of ongoing sanctions against the country and its government. In fact, SWIFT's board of directors have so far agreed that they won't respond to the pressure and calls to disconnect financial institutions in Russia from its network.
On April 18th, the CEO of SWIFT, Gottfried Leibbrandt, noted that, "Neutrality is integral to SWIFT, it's one of our core principles. As a unique utility to the global economy, we believe in serving the global financial community in its entirety. Having as many customers on our network as possible is beneficial to everyone, and in the interests of all global economic flows."
Even though this serves as pleasant news for Russia and the crypto-ruble, they may move in a different direction anyways. Russia may also be looking at their own SWIFT-like network. Something similar to Ripple or Stellar Lumens, that would work in conjunction with a crypto-ruble and allow them to continue cross-board remittance.
The take away here is that Russia is pushing forward with the crypto-ruble, joining countries such as India and Venezuela in the implementation of a digitalized, national currency (something discussed in my book "The Satoshi Sequence"). This will also lead to a digital economy and wider use of blockchain technology. If this new market can back the sovereignty of a nation, then it can surely give individuals back their sovereignty as well. Developments like this will be important to monitor going forward.
Link: The cryptoruble
Link: The Satoshi Sequence