Moscow Might Run Out Of Money By Next Year, Says Russian Oligarch
Russia could find itself with no money as soon as next year unless the country secures investments from “friendly” nations, outspoken Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska has said.
“There will be no money already next year, we need foreign investors,” Mr Deripaska stated at an economic conference in Siberia on Thursday, CNN reported. The billionaire, who called for an end to Moscow’s war in Ukraine in the early days of the conflict last year, also went on to say that funds are running low and “that’s why they’ve [the Russian government] already begun to shake us down”.
Mr Deripaska said that Russia was suffering from “serious” pressure from western sanctions, and that the nation and its business would have to look to other countries with “serious resources” to invest. “We thought we were a European country,” Mr Deripaska stated, as per The Guardian. “Now, for the next 25 years, we will think more about our Asian past,” he added.
Notably, Mr Deripaska’s remarks come after Russian President Vladimir Putin praised the country’s economy for its resilience in the face of unprecedented Russian sanctions imposed the previous year. According to a preliminary estimate from the government, Russia’s economic output shrank only 2.1% last year. This contraction was more limited than many economists initially predicted.
According to CNN, since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, Western countries have imposed more than 11,300 sanctions and frozen about $300 billion of Russia’s foreign reserves in an effort to starve the country of resources for its aggression. However, China has thrown the Kremlin an economic lifeline by buying Russian energy, replacing Western suppliers of machinery and base metals among other products, and providing an alternative to the US dollar.
Still, Moscow has a long way to go before it can recover the lost export money and other sources of income due to the sanctions.