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March 3rd 2008

Ruble as Regional Reserve Currency

Two weeks ago, then-First Deputy Prime Minister of Russia, Dmitry Medvedev, commented publicly on a more significant role for the Russian Ruble in the global economy, and especially in the regional economy.  Fast forward to yesterday, when Medvedev was elected the next Prime Minister of Russia, which means his ideas on forex are more likely to become policy.  Medvedev has argued in favor of turning the Ruble into a regional reserve currency.  This would first necessitate liberalizing its forex policy by permitting the Ruble to float freely; it is currently fixed to a basket of Euros and Dollars.  Given the uncertainty surrounding the Dollar and the global economy at large, as well as the recent boom in Russia’s economy, Medvedev clearly smells an opportunity. Neighboring (former Soviet bloc) countries could be persuaded to denominate their reserves partially in Rubles as well as to consider using Rubles in energy transactions. Reuters reports:

Russia, which receives most of its energy revenues in dollars, buys euros, pounds sterling, yen and Swiss francs to diversify its $478 billion gold and forex reserves, the world’s third-largest.

Read More: Free Float Seen as Key For Reserve Currency

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Posted by Adam Kritzer | in Emerging Currencies, Politics & Policy | No Comments »

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