Seeking alternatives to US dollar dominance in global finance on day one of SPIEF 2018

Seeking alternatives to US dollar dominance in global finance on day one of SPIEF 2018
The first day of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) has seen various discussions on ways of ditching the US currency which dominates global trade.

Veteran investor Jim Rogers has noted that the US currency will likely lose its leadership status in the next decade.

“Dollar is going to be higher than now because the turmoil is coming. Then, it is going to be overpriced and people will look around and say, ‘America’s got the largest debt in the history of the world. It’s printing money as fast as it can,’” the investor said at the Valdai Club’s discussion session, held as part of SPIEF.

The alternative is coming from Brazil, Russia, China, India, Iran and other developing countries, according to Rogers, who said these states have enough power to compete with the dollar.

Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov suggested the euro could substitute the dollar in Russia’s foreign trade if Brussels takes a stand against Washington’s latest sanctions against Moscow. “As we see, restrictions imposed by the American partners are of an extraterritorial nature. The possibility of switching from the US dollar to the euro in settlements depends on Europe’s stance toward Washington’s position,” said Siluanov, who is also Russia’s first deputy prime minister. The minister added that the Chinese yuan, Indian rupee, and Russian ruble can also play a greater role in trade.

The need for more ruble-yuan settlements comes as trade between Russia and China grows. Xu Sitao, chief economist with Deloitte China, told RT that China has become the largest export market for Russia since 2017, accounting for roughly 12-13 percent of Russian exports.

“As I said earlier, Russia and China are very complementary. China is moving away from dirty energy coal, so I do expect further collaboration between our countries, I’m quite optimistic,” he said. Both Moscow and Beijing have repeatedly stressed they don’t need other currencies for bilateral trade.

Russia’s St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, one of the world’s key economic discussion platforms, opened on Thursday. This year, about 40 world leaders, including French President Emmanuel Macron, are attending the event. SPIEF 2018 will also welcome leading investment funds from 20 countries with total assets of more than $13.5 trillion.

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