MOSCOW, December 1. /TASS/. Russia advocated developing its own settlement systems that will not depend on Western payment mechanisms, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said at a press conference following an online meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers of the countries participating in the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO).
When asked what steps Russia and Belarus will take if they are disconnected from the SWIFT system he said: "The conclusion is very simple. We need to develop our own mechanisms that will not preserve the dependence of our countries on the West, especially since the West has repeatedly proved its unreliability as a partner."
"Of course, relying on multilateral instruments that are entirely in the hands of the West, under the control of Western entities, is no longer quite reliable," the minister stressed.
"I would like to note that discussions about the transition to our own settlement systems have been going on not only in theory, but also in the practical terms both in the Russian Federation, and within the Eurasian Economic Union, within the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), a meeting of the Prime Ministers took place just a few days ago. The topic is quite relevant, and we will definitely strive for its implementation, regardless of how the SWIFT issue is resolved and what next steps our Western colleagues will take, if I may say so, "Lavrov added.
The Russian top diplomat noted that the topic of the SWIFT payment system is being used to aggravate the situation, to issue ultimatums and threats.
"This attention is paid to SWIFT primarily because this system, which was created by the Americans and their allies, serves financial flows to ensure normal trade, trade in services, investment and virtually all other aspects of economic life," he explained.