Russian Economy Ready for ‘Any Scenario’, says analyst

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Since 2014, the Russian economy “has been based on the most pessimistic scenarios” and its Central Bank is ready to face both Western sanctions and the reduction of oil prices, Forbes columnist Kenneth Rapoza says.

The only scenario that could be even more negative would be a war, wrote the analyst. Regarding external factors such as sanctions from Washington or the European Union, Moscow already takes all of this into account.

The author cited the words of the first vice-president of the Russian Central Bank, Ksenia Yudaeva, according to which the regulator has considered all possible risk scenarios, including reducing the price of oil to 35 dollars per barrel.

Rapoza stresses that the Russian budget is calculated based on the price of 50 dollars and if the value is lower than this, the budget should be reduced.

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The article says that the United States threatens to impose new sanctions against Russia, but it is hard to say where such sanctions will come from.

The columnist also pointed out that Moscow has a plan, even if the United States limits the use of the dollar to the country, referring to a possible policy of de-dollarization of the Russian economy.

Relations between Russia and Western countries worsened because of the situation in eastern Ukraine where a coup d’état took place in 2014 and also because of the Crimea, which later reunified with Russia after a referendum that was held according to international law standards. The West accused Moscow of interfering in Ukrainian affairs and introduced sanctions, while Russia took measures to respond.

The Russian government, meanwhile, said it was developing measures to reduce Russia’s dependence on the dollar, but there are no plans to abandon the currency altogether.

Such measures to limit the use of the US dollar include trading in local currencies with other states and purchasing more gold.

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