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13 May, 2008 08:05

Oil billions to bolster Russian pensions

Russia’s national welfare fund, which currently tops $US 32 billion, could soon take advantage of the new more liberal investment mechanisms created by the Ministry of Finance. The new conditions will allow Russia to put money into direct overseas investm

Ministry official Pyotr Kazakevich spoke to RT about the potential ways to invest the oil billions.

The main goal is to co-finance the voluntary pension savings of Russian citizens and to finance the possible deficit of the Russian pension fund,” said Kazakevich.

He said that now the funds are invested only in high-grade fixed income assets. The average return on investment is 10% annually in U.S. dollars.

Kazakevich considers the national welfare fund should be invested “more aggressively” to earn income in order to secure its obligations, so the investment strategy will soon be changed towards equities and corporate bonds following the government order.

According to Kazakevich, five to ten per cent is the recommended starting amount to be invested in overseas assets.