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Ruble unlikely to return to pre-sanctions level within months, ex-finance minister warns

April 23, 13:10 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Meanwhile, high global oil prices support the ruble, due to which the exchange rate started to recover after a short devaluation period caused by new US sanctions

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© Sergei Fadeichev/TASS

MOSCOW, April 23. /TASS/. Chief of the Center for Strategic Research (CSR) and ex-Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin does not expect Russia’s national currency to recover to the level of early April when the US slapped new sanctions, within 2-3 months.

"Western funds overestimated political risks regarding investing in Russia. This overestimation, decrease of those limits is a fundamental, substantial indicator. That is why the ruble has not fully recovered. We see the process going on. Unfortunately, it is sluggish as it is connected with persisting sanctions. Once the overestimation took place, the return to previous positions is unlikely within days or 2-3 months," he said in an interview with NTV TV channel.

Meanwhile, high global oil prices support the ruble, due to which the exchange rate started to recover after a short devaluation period caused by new US sanctions.

"As long as the oil price is high we can say that this is a temporary drop. The crude price is a more fundamental indicator," Kudrin said, adding that he expects the Russian currency to "return to fairer indicators as soon as political tempers settle."

On April 6, the US authorities slapped sanctions against Russia’s top seven businessmen, 17 officials and heads of state-owned corporations, as well as 12 private and two state companies. According to the US Treasury, the assets of all 24 Russian citizens and 14 companies, if there are any under US jurisdiction, will be frozen.

Sanctions affected Russia’s state arms seller Rosoboronexport, Russian Financial Corporation and the country's biggest aluminum producer Rusal. The list also included Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller, VTB CEO Andrei Kostin, Renova owner Viktor Vekselberg, General Director of Surgutneftegaz Vladimir Bogdanov, Sibur board member Kirill Shamalov, businessmen Igor Rotenberg, Oleg Deripaska and Suleiman Kerimov.

On April 9, shares of Russian firms, sovereign bonds and the ruble sharply declined in price, reacting to the sanctions announced on April 6.

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