The share of ruble and yuan settlements in Russia’s foreign trade has reached almost 70%, as Moscow continues to move away from Western currencies, according to Russia’s Economic Development Minister, Maksim Reshetnikov. Speaking at the Russia-China Energy Business Forum in Beijing, Reshetnikov stated that the de-dollarization of Russian trade with China is nearing completion. He added that 68% of Russia’s overall trade is now conducted in rubles and yuan, and that 95% of its trade with China is settled in these two currencies. Reshetnikov also noted that the issue of payment channels has been resolved successfully.
Recent data from the Russian Economic Development Ministry reveals that the yuan surpassed the dollar in Russia’s import settlements with China in 2022. As a result, the Chinese currency has been increasingly utilized in Russian trade with other nations, including Mongolia, Taiwan, the Philippines, Malaysia, the United Arab Emirates, Thailand, Japan, Tajikistan, and Singapore.
These changes in currency settlements reflect Russia’s efforts to reduce its reliance on currencies from “unfriendly countries,” particularly in the face of economic sanctions. By diversifying its trading currencies, Russia aims to protect its economy from the potential negative effects of such sanctions.
Reshetnikov also expressed optimism about the growth of Russia-China trade turnover. He predicted that it could surpass the target of $200 billion and reach around $220 billion by the end of this year. The increasing use of ruble and yuan settlements is expected to contribute to this steady growth in bilateral trade.
This shift in currency settlements aligns with Russia’s broader strategy of reducing its dependence on Western financial systems and currencies. The country has been actively promoting the use of national currencies in international trade, aiming to strengthen economic ties with countries that share similar goals. By promoting settlements in rubles and yuan, Russia seeks to enhance its economic sovereignty and reduce potential vulnerabilities arising from the dominance of Western currencies.
The developments in Russia-China trade also have broader implications for the global financial landscape. The increasing use of ruble and yuan settlements challenges the traditional dominance of the dollar as the primary currency for international trade and payments. As Russia and other countries continue to diversify their trading currencies, it could lead to a more multipolar financial system with a greater role for non-Western currencies.
In conclusion, the share of ruble and yuan settlements in Russia’s foreign trade has risen to nearly 70% due to Moscow’s shift away from Western currencies. Russia’s de-dollarization efforts in trade with China are close to completion, with 95% of its trade with China now settled in rubles and yuan. This shift reflects Russia’s broader strategy of reducing reliance on currencies from “unfriendly countries” and diversifying its trading currencies. The increasing use of ruble and yuan settlements not only strengthens Russia’s economic sovereignty but also challenges the traditional dominance of the dollar in global trade and payments.