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Digital Law Journal: Introduction

https://doi.org/10.38044/DLJ-2020-1-1-8-11

Abstract

I am glad to greet you in the pages of the international, peer-reviewed Digital Law Journal. The mission of the Journal is to provide a platform to exchange and discuss information around various research aspects and best practices concerned with the legalization of digital technologies. Another fundamental goal is to elucidate the peculiarities of these technologies and their implementation prospects within a legal and regulatory framework.

For citation:


Inozemtsev M.I. Digital Law Journal: Introduction. Digital Law Journal. 2020;1(1):8-11. (In Russ.) https://doi.org/10.38044/DLJ-2020-1-1-8-11

Dear Readers,

I am glad to greet you in the pages of the international, peer-reviewed Digital Law Journal. The mission of the Journal is to provide a platform to exchange and discuss information around various research aspects and best practices concerned with the legalization of digital technologies. An­other fundamental goal is to elucidate the peculiarities of these technol­ogies and their implementation prospects within a legal and regulatory framework.

At present, attempts to use digital technologies in socioeconomic and production processes pose two major problems. The first is updating the existing legal provisions; the second relates to the transformation of the legal system in order to address the digital challenges of our time.

Several countries have already begun to shape their approaches to the legalization of digital assets, al­though their attitudes to the issue are rather contradictory. The comparatively recent incorporation of digital technologies into the legal sphere, alongside their novelty and originality, is combined with a lack of legal control of such relations in many jurisdictions.

It is important to note that Russia is ranked second among the world's cryptocurrency traders1. Figures for January 2020 show that, according to the approval rating of cryptocurrencies as an investment vehicle, Russia is one of the top 5 countries2. In the most popular P2P bitcoin marketplace, LocalBitcoins.com, Russia is also leading in the trading volume3. However, based on BloomChain research4, Russia ranks 40th among 63 players in the FinTech market, and falls behind other countries as far as the factors of 'legal and regulatory framework', 'technologies', and being 'future ready' are concerned. Consequently, Russia is one of the most promising economies, whilst at the same time is behind many 'digital' jurisdictions in doctrine and regulation. It is my firm belief that the Digital Law Journal can facilitate the legalization of digital technologies on both the national and international levels. This quarterly aims to become an environment for research, expert analysis, and education, regarding the evolution and establishment of digital law and digital economy.

Lawmaking in the field of digital economy in our country is developing rapidly. The category of 'digi­tal rights' in Russian law is legalized by Federal Act № 34-FZ5; the biometric identification act6 and the crowdfund act7 are also applied, whilst the legislation of digital financial assets is pending8. Additionally, the national programme 'Digital Economy of the Russian Federation' is already in force9, and the Bank of Russia is implementing the proposals outlined in the policy paper 'Basic Directions of Financial Technologies Development for the period 2018-2020’10.

The Bank of Russia has launched some FinTech projects: a regulatory sandbox, a financial service mar­ketplace, a coin marketplace for banks, a faster payment system, remote identification and biometrics in banks. The FinTech Association implements the projects of digital KYC, electronic letters of credit, and digital mortgagesll. The FinTech, RegTech/SupTech, and GovTech markets in Russia are developing with the aid of dynamic start-ups; they are given infrastructure support by the FinTech Association, the Russian Association of Cryptoindustry and Blockchain (RACIB), the Skolkovo Foundation, and others.

Russia is one of the leaders in implementing the digital agenda of the Eurasian Economic Union. In this regard, the Eurasian Economic Commission (EEC) and the Eurasian Development Bank (EDB) released a joint report on cryptocurrency and blockchain issues12. The Russian Federation is also actively involved in the discussion of digital problems associated with the economic security of the Eurasian region.

In the field of the legal regulation of digital economy, a singular school of thought is just beginning to evolve. Nevertheless, there are centres for digital economy competencies in the Russian academic envi­ronment. It is worth mentioning such bodies as the Centre for Digital Economy and Financial Innovation at MGIMO University run by the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs; the Digital Economics Centre of the Na­tional Research University's Higher School of Economics; the Centre for Training Chief Digital Transformation Officers at the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration; the National Centre for Digital Economy at Lomonosov Moscow State University; the Russian School of Private Law; the Blockchain Academy Inc.; and others.

Market players also have expert groups (think tanks) which play a key role in creating this Russian school of thought; these include the Competence Centre for Normative Regulation in the Digital Economy at the Skolkovo Foundation; Vnesheconombank's Centre for Blockchain Competencies and Digitalization; the Robo- law Research Center for Problems of Robotics and Artificial Intelligence Regulation; the Russian E-money As­sociation; the National Council of Financial Market; and others. The best practices of management consulting companies (for instance, Baker, McKenzie, Delloite, Dentons, PWC) make a significant contribution to the legal element of the digital competence framework.

I am confident that the Digital Law Journal will facilitate the growth of a remarkable intellectual tradition in the field of legal support of digital economy development. To achieve this aim, the Journal is consolidating the efforts of the abovementioned actors and leading centres abroad (the American Chamber of Digital Commerce, the American Bar Association, the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance, the American Global Legal Research Center).

I would like to express sincere gratitude to the members of the Editorial Board for joining our interna­tional research project

About the Author

Maxim I. Inozemtsev
MGIMO University
Russian Federation


For citation:


Inozemtsev M.I. Digital Law Journal: Introduction. Digital Law Journal. 2020;1(1):8-11. (In Russ.) https://doi.org/10.38044/DLJ-2020-1-1-8-11

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