As Western sanctions put pressure on energy exports and reduced demand for the national currency, the Russian ruble has fallen to its lowest level since the early days of the Ukraine conflict.
The value of the Russian ruble has fallen by more than 25% since the start of the year, reaching its lowest point in nearly 17 months on Monday, when 101 rubles equaled one dollar.
Maksim Oreshkin, the economic advisor to President Vladimir Putin, attributed the weak currency to “loose monetary policy” in an opinion piece for the state news outlet Tass on Monday.
According to him, the Russian economy benefits from a strong ruble, and a weak one “complicates economic restructuring and adversely affects people’s real incomes.”
Oreshkin asserted that the Russian central bank has “all the tools necessary” to maintain stability and predicted that things would soon return to normal.
Alexei Zabotkin, deputy head of the central bank, stated during a news conference on Friday that the bank maintains a floating currency rate because “it allows the economy to effectively adapt to changing external conditions.
To support the ruble and lessen volatility, the central bank said days earlier that it would cease purchasing foreign currency on the domestic market until the end of the year.
Russia normally buys foreign currency when it has a surplus and sells it when it experiences a shortfall in earnings from oil and natural gas exports.
The ruble traded at approximately 66 to the dollar in January, but in the months that followed, it lost roughly a third of its value.