​Russia got rid of ‘Dutch disease’, low crude price not tragedy–finance minister

Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov (RIA Novosti/Sergey Guneev)
Low oil prices aren't a tragedy for Russia’s economy, the country has managed to end to its total dependence on oil known as a ‘Dutch disease’, Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said.

The ruble is currently at its real value, the minister said during an economic forum in the Russian city of Vladimir, RIA Novosti reported on Friday.

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Investments that previously went only to the oil industry, have been redirected to other areas, according to Siluanov.

“We now see that other spheres besides the oil industry can be developed as well. We have started effectively investing in the development of the so-called trade spheres such as agriculture, chemicals and oil products, that were not competitive before.”

In 2015, the ruble has compensated for a part of the losses it suffered last year. It was acknowledged the world’s best performing currency in 2015 after losing about 46 percent last year. At certain points the Russian currency continued to grow despite crude falling, which showed the link between the currency and oil prices was weakening.