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Russian government plans no extra support for banks under sanctions - finance minister

"Central Bank is now to take measures to provide liquidity, including foreign currency liquidity,” Anton Siluanov said

MILAN, September 13. /ITAR-TASS/. The Russian government is planning no extra measures to support those state-run banks which have come under the newly-imposed western sanctions, Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said after the Asia-Europe ministerial meeting (ASEM) on Friday.

“We had done all we could have done for our state-run banks. We helped them during the previous crisis,” Siluanov recalled. “For the time being we plan no extra measures, bearing in mind that the Central Bank is now to take measures to provide liquidity, including foreign currency liquidity.”

Siluanov said there were certain tensions over companies’ currency liabilities and retail clients’ demand for hard currency and the banks were obliged to meet this challenge.

“They will perform swap operations with the Central Bank to provide both rouble and hard currency liquidity,” he said.

Problems with foreign currency borrowings emerged with the escalation of geopolitical tensions. In a situation where Western markets have been virtually closed Russian banks find it far harder to borrow dollars and euros.

"Sanctions have adverse effects on all parties"

Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov has described Western sanctions against Russia as a “bad decision by governments bound to backfire on domestic businesses.”

“Sanctions have adverse effects on all parties,” Siluanov told the media after a ministerial level session of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) on Friday. “I am referring to any restrictions in trade, financial relations between countries and investment. They are the worst decisions by governments taken against their own respective businesses.”

Siluanov said the meeting’s format did not envisage an exchange of opinion. A number of those who took the floor at the session noted the need for eliminating barriers, including those in the financial sphere, “but there were no such remarks in relation to Russia.”

He said that in the context of sanctions it was impossible to discuss economic growth, the lifting of restrictions in trade or resistance to protectionism.

“Certainly, such restrictions do influence not only the general amount of world trade and the movement of capital, but economic growth in general,” Siluanov said. “We are hoping for an early settlement of issues related to the imposed restrictions on cash flows, trade and investment.