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31 Dec, 2022 08:59

Transfers to foreign banks from Russia surge 26-fold

Residents sent record amounts abroad throughout the year, Central Bank data shows
Transfers to foreign banks from Russia surge 26-fold

New foreign currency deposits held by Russian residents in overseas banks hit a record 1.47 trillion rubles ($19.9 billion) in the third quarter of 2022, data published on the Bank of Russia website on Friday showed.

According to the regulator, transfers nearly tripled against the previous quarter, when they amounted to 551 billion rubles. They also surged by 26 times compared to the third quarter of 2021, when residents moved only 57 billion rubles to overseas accounts.

Earlier, the Bank of Russia reported that as of November 1, residents kept nearly 4.19 trillion rubles in foreign accounts. Overall transfers in all three quarters of the year were at a record high.

According to the Governor of the Bank of Russia, Elvira Nabiullina, the outflow of currency abroad is not a cause for concern.

The return of these funds to the Russian banking system, in rubles, will happen when people regain confidence in macroeconomic stability, in price stability,” she stated, adding that the regulator currently has no plans to take any special measures to curtail transfers.

In March this year, the Bank of Russia placed restrictions on transfers to foreign banks for individuals in order to support the economy amid Western sanctions, by stemming the outflow of capital. Initially, residents were allowed to transfer only up to $5,000 a month to their overseas accounts, but the limit was later gradually increased to $1 million. The restrictions will be in place until March 31, 2023.

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