Chinese banks extend billions in loans to Russia amid Western credit exodus

4 September, 05:15 PM
China (Photo:REUTERS / Thomas Peter)

China (Photo:REUTERS / Thomas Peter)

Chinese banks have extended billions of dollars in loans to Russian banks due to the exodus of Western creditors during the first year of the full-scale conflict in Ukraine, aiming to advance the yuan as an alternative global currency to the dollar, UK newspaper the Financial Times reported on Sept. 4.

China’s four largest banks — Bank of China Ltd., Industrial & Commercial Bank of China Ltd., China Construction Bank Corp., and Agricultural Bank of China Ltd. — have significantly increased their influence on the Russian banking sector. According to data from the Kyiv School of Economics, from February to March of the previous year, their stake in the Russian banking sector quadrupled.

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Initially, in early 2022, their combined stake in Russia amounted to $2.2 billion. However, by the end of March of the current year, this figure had nearly quadrupled to almost $10 billion, according to the Central Bank of Russia.

Andriy Onoprienko, Deputy Director of Development at the Kyiv School of Economics, pointed out that the loans provided by Chinese banks to Russian banks and credit organizations often substitute dollars and euros with yuan, indicating the effectiveness of sanctions.

Previously, it was reported that China had approved new maps, incorporating a portion of Russian territory into its own.

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