12 Apr 2023 15:41

CBR estimates capital outflow from Russia in 2022 at $1 billion, sees it as modest

MOSCOW. April 12 (Interfax) - Capital outflow from Russia in 2022 is estimated at about $1 billion, Central Bank of Russia Governor Elvira Nabiullina said at a joint meeting of State Duma committees.

"What we have always called capital outflow, which is the withdrawal of money on dubious, suspicious grounds, it is now quite small - about $1 billion, which could be a problem," said Nabiullina.

The head of the Central Bank urged not to confuse capital outflow from Russia with the balance of the financial account, which amounted to $227 billion in 2022. In 2023, the financial account balance, according to a February CBR forecast, is expected to reach $68 billion, in 2024 - $57 billion and in 2025 - $44 billion.

It is difficult to present an exact breakdown of this indicator into individual components, Nabiullina said.

"There are different components. I cannot tell you specifically how many there are, unfortunately. When companies keep money on deposit in foreign banks, they can buy imports, it could include an advance on imports. You know that partners are now demanding large advances, larger prepayments, why this amount has increased, or maybe it's really outflowing capital, which is not going to come back. If it is an advance on imports, trade finance, it is incorrect to call it a capital outflow, it comes back in the form of goods and so on. It's almost impossible to separate these values," she said.

According to indirect indicators, about a quarter of the financial account balance (of $227 billion) is in the form of trade loans and advances, some of them (about $40 billion) are payments on foreign debts, Nabiullina said.

Besides, a number of Russian citizens have opened accounts abroad and some of the money from those accounts is also used to pay for imported goods, the head of the regulator said.