Russia has continued to boost its foreign currency reserves, which stood at $569.6 billion as of October 20, the central bank reported this week.
According to the regulator, the volume of international reserves increased by $3.6 billion, or 0.6%, in the week from October 13, largely due to “a positive market revaluation.”
The stockpile reached a historic high of $643.2 billion on February 18, 2022.
However, roughly half of the holdings were frozen by Western central banks last March as part of Ukraine-related sanctions. In addition to freezing the funds, Western countries banned operations related to their management. The remaining assets consisting of gold and foreign currency, as well as Chinese yuan, are held within the country.
President Vladimir Putin stated last month that Russia has already earned double the amount of the gold and foreign exchange reserves frozen by the West last year. Speaking at the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok, he said the freezing of Russian assets causes an “erosion of credibility” in Western countries.
“I know that our gold and foreign exchange reserves are frozen. Yes, we have already earned twice as much. But we’re not even talking about this $300 billion, we’re talking about undermining trust in those who did this,” Putin argued.
Many economists have warned that the seizure of Russian assets is jeopardizing investor confidence in the Western banking system. The EU has been mulling ways to use the profits from investing Russian assets to cover the costs of the reconstruction of Ukraine. Moscow has repeatedly warned that it will respond with similar measures with regard to Western assets held in the country.
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