MOSCOW, October 14. /TASS/. The Bank of Russia does not consider prudent to completely abandon the dollar in international reserves, department director Alexei Zabotkin said in the State Duma [lower house of the Russian parliament - TASS] on Monday.
"From my personal point of view, complete exclusion of the dollar from [international] reserves is associated with excessive risks," he said.
The whole range of liabilities is nominated in dollars, including the state debt, Zabotkin said. "Therefore, gold and currency reserves will be needed in a bad situation, when we have a dramatic worsening of the payment balance and budget revenues and when it will be required to settle such liabilities at the expense of funds in the budget, for example, transfers at the expense of the National Wealth Fund. It will be better if assets also denominated in dollars are against a portion of such liabilities in this case. In other words, it is probably wrong to completely reject the dollar in gold and currency reserves," he added.
Russia sold a considerable portion of its dollar-denominated reserves (about $100 bln) last year after a new round of US sanctions and increased settlements in alternative currencies, having bought the euro and the yuan in the amount of about $90 bln, the Central Bank said in its annual report earlier.
The share of the dollar in reserves dropped from 45.8% to 22.7%. The yuan share increased from 2.8% to 14.2%. The share of the pound sterling declined from 8.3% to 6%. The euro share rose from 21.7% to 31.7%. The share of gold rose by 0.9 percentage point to 18.1% as of the 2018 year-end.