MOSCOW, January 14. /TASS/. The Bank of Russia will sell 500 billion rubles worth of hard currency from the Reserve Fund, Finance Minister Anton Siluanov told the Gaidar Forum in Moscow on Wednesday.
“We believe it will be economically effective to use the right to tap the Reserve Fund for budget purposes,” he said. “In other words, in cooperation with the Central Bank, we will sell part of the government’s hard currency assets, convert it to rubles and place the rubles on banks’ deposits.”
Siluanov recalled that 500 billion rubles was the maximum amount of Reserve Fund money that could be used this year. The measure, he said, would help stabilize the exchange rates and improve liquidity.
“We will have a resource for financing our spending that must be made at the beginning of the year,” he said.
Russia’s budget deficit this year will most probably stay under two percent and in any case it will be no higher than three percent, Siluanov told the RBC-TV in an interview on Wednesday.
“This year the budget deficit will most probably stay between two and three percent if we make a decision to optimize spending,” he said.