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    Russia says almost half its reserves are frozen, counts on ties with China

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    By Mark Trevelyan

    LONDON (Reuters) – Russia stated on Sunday that it was relying on China to assist it face up to the blow to its economic system from Western sanctions, which it stated had frozen almost half of its gold and international foreign money reserves.

    “We’ve got a part of our gold and international change reserves within the Chinese language foreign money, in yuan. And we see what stress is being exerted by Western nations on China with a view to restrict mutual commerce with China. In fact, there may be stress to restrict entry to these reserves,” Finance Minister Anton Siluanov stated.

    “However I believe that our partnership with China will nonetheless enable us to take care of the cooperation that we’ve got achieved, and never solely keep, but in addition enhance it in an setting the place Western markets are closing.”

    Western nations have imposed unprecedented sanctions on Russia’s company and monetary system because it invaded Ukraine on Feb. 24 in what it calls a particular navy operation.

    Siluanov’s feedback in a TV interview marked the clearest assertion but from Moscow that it’ll search assist from China to cushion the impression.

    The 2 nations have tightened cooperation in latest instances as each have come beneath sturdy Western stress over human rights and a raft of different points.

    Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese language President Xi Jinping met in Beijing on Feb. 4 and introduced a strategic partnership they stated was aimed toward countering the affect of america, describing it as a friendship with no limits.

    The sanctions on Russian reserves have turn out to be one of the vital painful measures for the Russian economic system.

    A month in the past, Siluanov stated Russia would be capable to face up to sanctions because of ample reserves and was even contemplating providing Eurobonds to international buyers as soon as the market volatility subsides.

    On Sunday he stated the sanctions had frozen round $300 billion out of $640 billion that Russia had in its gold and foreign exchange reserves.

    Siluanov additionally stated Russia will fulfil its state debt obligations and can pay roubles to its debt holders till the state reserves are unfrozen.

    (Modifying by Susan Fenton)

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