Russia may use national currencies in trade with Iran,Turkey
"Russia is considering payments in national currencies in trade with Iran and Turkey amid their escalating tensions with the US," Energy Minister Alexander Novak said.
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“There is a common understanding that we need to move towards the use of national currencies in our settlements. There is a need for this, as well as the wish of the parties,” Russian broadcaster RT quoted Novak as saying Monday.
“This concerns both Turkey and Iran – we are considering an option of payment in national currencies with them,” he added.
The central banks of Iran and Turkey signed an agreement last year on using local currencies in trade instead of the US dollar and the euro.
Tehran and Moscow are currently in talks to agree on a similar arrangement. Novak said this "requires certain adjustments in the financial, economic and banking sectors".
The idea of using national currencies in trade got a major boost during Vladimir Putin’s November visit to Tehran where Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei told the Russian president that the best way to beat US sanctions was to dump the dollar in trade.
Both Iran and Russia are under unilateral US sanctions which have complicated transactions in dollars because they have to be processed through the US financial system.
Rouble, rial, lira suffer biggest falls
On Monday, Russia's rouble suffered its biggest daily fall in over three years and stocks in major Russian companies also slid following a new round of US sanctions targeting some of Russia's biggest tycoons.
In Iran, the rial hit an all-time low of 62,000 against the US dollar on the unregulated market before the government intervened and set a unified rate of 42,000.