Home LAST NEWS President Vladimir Putin says sanctions on Russia are weakening the West

President Vladimir Putin says sanctions on Russia are weakening the West

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The Kremlin demands that “unfriendly” countries pay in May for the purchase of gas in rubles.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Monday (April 18th) that the sanctions decided by Western countries against Russia in connection with the situation in Ukraine had led to a “deterioration of the economy in the West”.

In a speech on the state of the Russian economy, he added that inflation in his country was stabilizing and demand had returned to normal. Western countries have decided on unprecedented sanctions against Russia, its companies and its financial system since the start, on February 24, of what Moscow presents as a “special military operation” but that kyiv considers an invasion.

The countries “unfriendly” still have time to opt for payment in rubles for the gas they buy from Russia, the Kremlin said. The spokesperson for the Russian presidency refused to specify how many countries had already accepted this change in the mode of payment for their gas imports. Dmitry Peskov explained that payment for deliveries that have taken place since Vladimir Putin signed the decree was expected in May.

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17% inflation in March

Ahead of Vladimir Putin’s speech, Russian central bank governor Elvira Nabiullina said she was considering another cut in interest rates and said it would take about two years to bring inflation back towards the 4% target. that the authorities have set themselves. Consumer price inflation in Russia reached 17% in March.

The central bank had raised its main key rate to 20% on February 28, against 9.5% previously, after the fall of the ruble caused by the start of the conflict and the first Western sanctions, but it reduced it to 17% on April 8.

“We need to be able to cut the policy rate more quicklysaid Elvira Nabioullina in a speech to deputies on Monday. We must create the conditions to increase the availability of credit in the economy.”

Sanctions, she said, have so far mostly affected financial markets “but now they will start to affect the economy more and more”.

She said Moscow planned to initiate legal proceedings against the blocking of Russian assets, including gold and foreign currency belonging to Russian residents.

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In a message published on his site, Sergei Sobyanin, mayor of Moscow, announced that at least 200,000 jobs are threatened in his city by the departure or cessation of the activities of foreign companies. The town hall will offer employees of foreign companies who are technically unemployed “temporary jobs” allowing additional income, such as “the management of archives or the repair of equipment” from the city. The municipality also says it provides subsidies to finance professional retraining.

Boutcha killers rewarded

Vladimir Putin awarded Monday, April 18, an honorary title for “heroism” to the 64th motorized rifle brigade, which Ukraine accused of having participated in the abuses committed in Boutcha, near kyiv.

The Russian President signed a decree granting the title of “Guard” to this brigade because of the “heroism and tenacity, determination and courage” of its men. “The skillful and decisive actions of all personnel during the special military operation in Ukraine are a model of the execution of military duty, courage, determination and high professionalism,” Putin wrote.

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