Sanctions are boosting Russia-China trade – leading entrepreneur
Western sanctions have provided further impetus for Russia and China to develop trade ties, with the use of national currencies in transactions between the two nations also having a significant impact, Zhou Liqun, chairman of the Chinese Entrepreneurs Union of Russia, told RT on Wednesday.
Speaking on the sidelines of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF), Zhou said that since the introduction of Western sanctions against Moscow, Russia and China have accelerated the use of their own currencies in trade, which has benefitted both nations.
According to official figures, bilateral trade between China and Russia rose by over 34% year-on-year in 2022 to a record high of $190 billion. In the first four months of the current year, turnover jumped by over 41% compared to the same period in 2022, Chinese customs data showed in May.
Given this trend, surpassing this year’s target of $200 billion will not be a problem, Zhou predicted. At the moment, roughly 70% of all transactions between Russia and China are carried out in their national currencies, the businessman added. The figures echoed estimates shared in May by Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin.
The development comes as part of a wider global push to reduce reliance on the US dollar as a reserve currency and to find alternative currencies for trade. The trend has gained traction among numerous developing nations since the US and its allies imposed financial and economic restrictions against Moscow over its military operation in Ukraine.
Although sanctions present a challenge for Russia, they also provide Moscow and Beijing with the opportunity to develop mutual cooperation, Zhou said, citing numerous new projects that are already being implemented.
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