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Russia threatens to sell all its raw materials in rubles to “unfriendly countries”

The president of the State Duma or Chamber of Deputies of Russia, Viacheslav Volodin, has proposed this Wednesday to expand the list of goods and raw materials that will be exported in rubles to “unfriendly countries” (those that are imposing economic sanctions on the regime by Vladimir Putin) and not limit this measure to natural gas sales.

“It would be correct, where it suits our country, to expand the list of goods that are exported in rubles and include fertilizers, grain, oil, petroleum, coal, wood…” Volodin wrote in his Telegram account. The legislator has stressed that European countries have all the market mechanisms to pay in rubles.”It is not a tragedy. It is much more terrible when there is money, but there is no merchandise,” he added.

Russian President Vladimir Putin announced last week that the country will refuse to pay for Russian gas in currencies, including the dollar and the euro, and that it will charge only in rubles for supplies to countries “unfriendly to each other, those of the Union European (EU), USA or UK”. Putin explained that the measure is in response to the sanctions adopted against Russia for its “special military operation” (according to the terminology of the Kremlin) in Ukraine.

The Government and the Central Bank of Russia, as well as the Gazprom gas consortium, plan to present this Thursday a report requested by Putin on the measures to be taken to transfer the payment for the fuel in rubles. This requirement has been flatly rejected by the importing countries, which argue that the contracts indicate that the payment currencies are the dollar and the euro.

“European politicians have to stop looking for justifications as to why their countries cannot pay in rubles,” the Duma president stressed on Wednesday. Russia maintains that gas importers can buy rubles on the Russian domestic market to pay for supplies.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitri Peskov called on European companies on Tuesday to take on the new realities emerging amid tensions between Russia and the West. “Companies must understand that there is a change in circumstances, an absolute change in the situation created by the economic war unleashed against Russia,” he said. (EFE and Reuters)

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