15:29 GMT +322 October 2018
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    EU Firms Considering Ending Use of Dollar in Transactions With Russia – Minister

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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - European companies are considering the idea of abandoning the dollar in transactions with Russia, switch to the euro is a natural consequence of the US policy, Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said on Friday.

    "This is something that is decided by two sides, so we will now work with our partners. I think they are interested now too. As you know, there were reports about the initiative to create a euro-SWIFT payment system which will be used exclusively among European banks, European financial institutions for trade in oil, oil products and other commodities. I think the Europeans are already thinking about this. We are ready to join such initiatives," Siluanov told the Rossiya 24 broadcaster, when asked whether it was possible that European companies would use euro in the purchase of Russian oil and gas next year.

    READ MORE: Russian Investment Fund to Strike First Non-Dollar Deals With China in 2019

    The minister noted that such move would become "a response to the restrictions imposed by the United States, including against enterprises and financial institutions that use the dollar in their transactions."

    The external pressure by sanctions is currently the main factor affecting the ruble exchange rate, but the Russian Central Bank and the Russian government know how to react to the fluctuations, Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said on Friday.

    "These are certainly the external factors, related to sanctions, that [exercise] the major influence on the currency exchange rate. In 2017, and in 2018 as well, we have secured the ruble exchange rate's absolute stability regardless of external factors, related to the oil prices, as we have introduced a budget rule. But it is difficult to secure the same 100 percent exchange rate stability amid external influences related to sanctions," Siluanov said in an interview with the Rossiya 24 TV channel.

    He added that the Finance Ministry and the Central Bank were pursuing quite a moderate policy at the currency market.

    "In general, there is an understanding of how we should react to the emerging situation. I hope that the government's and the Central Bank's actions will promote the stability of the exchange rate," Siluanov said.

    He added that the Russian national currency had a sufficient safety margin, although the volatility at the finance markets was possible in the short term due to sanctions.

    Earlier, Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said that the US dollar was becoming an unreliable tool for payments in international trade.

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