Russian exporters boost foreign earnings sales

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This has helped strengthen the ruble by around 10% against major currencies in the past two months

Major Russian exporters have been converting more of their foreign currency earnings to rubles in the past two months, the director of the financial stability department of the Bank of Russia, Elizaveta Danilova, said at a press briefing last week.

According to Danilova, net sales of foreign currency by the country’s 29 largest exporters in October alone jumped by 36% month-on-month, to $12.5 billion. She did not give the exact figures for November, but noted that they have already exceeded the previous month’s total.

The official said the trend followed last month’s presidential decree ordering exporters to sell their foreign revenues and repatriate the proceeds. The measure was introduced to support the ruble, which at the time had been weakening against Western currencies.

“In October-November this year, the ruble strengthened by more than 10% against the backdrop of rising oil prices and the restoration of the trade balance. The strengthening was also facilitated by the key rate hike, which limited excessive demand for imports and increased incentives for companies to quickly convert foreign currency earnings,” Danilova explained.

On October 10, the day before President Vladimir Putin signed the decree, the ruble traded at roughly 100 to the US dollar. On Friday, the Russian currency was trading at around 90 rubles to the greenback.

Danilova noted that the ruble’s future exchange rate will largely depend on foreign trade dynamics and global oil prices.

For more stories on economy & finance visit RT’s business section

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