Ministry of Finance of the Russian Federation
Ministry of Finance of the Russian Federation
26.04.2011

Statements of Director of the International Finance Affairs of Ministry of Finance of the Russian Federation A.Bokarev

 

Russia, Belarus May Reach Loan Pact In 2-3 Weeks -MinFin

MOSCOW (Dow Jones)--Russia and Belarus may agree on terms of a loan to the cash-strapped former Soviet republic within two to three weeks, a Russian Finance Ministry official said Tuesday.

"There is a program being worked out that will allow Belarus to receive financing and stabilize the situation in the country. This means stabilizing the exchange rate, at least temporarily, as well as dealing with problems related to the deficit," said Andrei Bokarev, the head of the ministry's international relations department.

Belarus is hoping to receive a $3 billion loan from Russia and a Moscow-led financial consortium in order to shore up its dwindling foreign exchange reserves.

Earlier, the Interfax new agency quoted Belarus Finance Minister Andrei Kharkovets as saying that an agreement will be reached next week. "Next week we are reaching the final document that will be proposed for signature to the Belarus and Russia finance ministers and national banks," he said.

 

Russia, Belarus Close to Loan Plan

The Wall Street Journal

MOSCOWRussia and Belarus may agree on terms of a loan to the cash-strapped former Soviet republic within two to three weeks, a Russian Finance Ministry official said Tuesday.

"We expect that in the next two to three weeks we will reach an agreement on the parameters for a loan," said Andrei Bokarev, head of the finance ministry's international relations department. "There is a program being worked out that will allow Belarus to receive financing and stabilize the situation in the country. This means stabilizing the exchange rate, at least temporarily, as well as dealing with problems related to the deficit."

Belarus is hoping to receive a $3 billion loan from Russia and a Moscow-led financial consortium in order to shore up its dwindling foreign exchange reserves. Earlier in the day, Belarussian Finance Minister Andrei Kharkovets said an agreement on the loan will be reached next week, local news agencies reported.

That news came on the heels of an announcement by the country's central bank that it was scrapping plans for a second trading session for the ruble, during which it had promised to let the tightly managed currency trade freely. Russia has said that liberalizing the exchange rate was a key step for receiving financial aid.

Another reversal by the country's monetary authorities came last week, after the central bank first allowed the ruble to trade freely on the interbank market, then just two days later recommended banks trade the ruble near the official exchange rate, effectively freezing the market.

"We have asked our Belarussian colleagues some questions, and they have explained their recent decisions,' Mr. Bokarev said, without adding any details.