Russia leading the pack
The union is intended to create a new Blockchain technology training program in order to move Russia forward in the Blockchain world. According to the statement:
“The agreement provides for a long-term and effective partnership in the implementation of projects using the technology of the distributed registry and Ethereum platform, the formation of an expert community on the Ethereum platform and the joint development and implementation of educational programs for training specialists in the field of distributed registries and the Ethereum platform based on Vnesheconombank's Competence Center.”
The program will produce educated and trained Blockchain experts for use and help in state-owned corporations as well as government bodies. The Competence Center will be in Moscow and will be open September 2017.
Impact on Ethereum
The impact on Ethereum is extremely positive in the short term. Additional partnerships, especially with government bodies, create much greater chain stability and confidence, as well as use. Prices should respond positively to this partnership.
However, if the shift from Proof of Work to Proof of Stake does take place, per Buterin’s road map, it may result in substantial government-held nodes, effectively centralizing Ethereum block creation.