MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Inflation in Russia is expected to reach 11.8 to 11.9 percent for 2015, Kremlin Chief of Staff Sergei Ivanov said Wednesday.
"Of course, the sanctions have affected us negatively, obviously. Access to credit resources was discontinued, inflation rose, we expect it to be about 11.8, 11.9 percent by the end of the year. That is a lot, the GDP will slow down,” Ivanov told reporters.
Last month, the Russian Finance Ministry said it expected the country’s inflation rate for 2015 to be around 11 percent or lower.
The Russian national currency has lost half of its value since summer 2014, at its lowest point falling to 67.8 rubles to the dollar in December 2014, amid plummeting oil prices and Western sanctions.
On December 16, 2014, the Central Bank made the largest single increase in interest rates since 1998, from 10.5 to 17 percent. The institution argued that the increase would limit currency depreciation risks and and mitigate against rapid inflation.
The bank's policy has led to the ruble regaining some of its value against Western currencies and stabilizing from large value swings.
Since then, the key interest rate has been gradually decreasing. In April it was cut to 12.5 percent.