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17 Sep, 2010 11:32

Stable economy provides backdrop for Sochi Forum

Russian political and banking leaders have underlined their commitment to getting macroeconomic policy settings right.

Opening the Forum, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin stressed that although there remained problems with the Russian economy, the government was committed to addressing the issues and laying the basis for stable long term economic growth

“The Russian economy is still not “spoiled” by the attention of investors – neither foreign, nor local ones. The Russian business climate is claimed to have problems. Sometimes these claims are justified, sometimes not. We know our problems really well and we will solve them. The key factor for the Russian government will be a measured and rather conservative macroeconomic policy.”

Sberbank President, and former Minister for Economic Development, Herman Gref, added that the recent stability of the Rouble underlined the stability of the Russian economy.

“The current situation on the foreign exchange market, i.e. rouble-dollar and rouble-euro relations, is stable enough and I'd say the fluctuation that we're seeing now is quite logical and is mainly tied to the actions of the market players and traders.But I can say that today the rouble is the most stable it can be and there are no reasons why the behaviour of investors and holders of rouble currency should change. Macroeconomic conditions are quite stable, the oil price is quite stable, the gold and foreign currency reserves are increasing and are quite sufficient to provide a stable exchange-value of the rouble.”

VTB President also added that with regard to banking regulation, the Central Bank of Russia has been ahead of the curve, and that the Recent Basel III agreement will see global banking move closer to Russian standards.

“What BASEL III is now claiming, that's approximately what we have in Russia by our national standards. So they always were stricter, frankly speaking we always were complaining to our Central Bank that we have much stricter regulation than in the West. Now they're quite similar so I don't think we need any further steps in this direction.”