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MOSCOW, December 31. /TASS/. At the moment work is in progress to promote ruble settlements for energy resources between Russia and other countries, but this requires prolonged negotiations and major efforts by the contracting parties, Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Vasily Nebenzya has told TASS.
“The issue of shifting export and import transactions to ruble settlements, and also to carry out bilateral transactions within the framework of bilateral trading and economic cooperation in the national currencies with those partners who seek constructive cooperation is regarded as an important long-term task,” Nebenzya said. “As you understand, though, during the period of the ruble’s high volatility this would be not only hard to achieve, but inexpedient as well.”
“As far as the possibility of achieving settlements in national currencies for energy supplies is concerned, I would like to point out that certain steps along these lines are being taken, but it is a long-term issue,” Nebenzya said.
“Changing the settlement currency used in firm long-term oil and gas contracts would require fundamental revision of the contractual base and consent by each individual recipient of Russian fuels,” the senior diplomat said. “This procedure is not only a subject matter of prolonged talks. It can and must require fundamental efforts by the contracting parties. We will be prepared for this work and, I hope, we will be gradually achieving a situation where we will be trading fuel for rubles — at first with individual countries.