Western sanctions against Russia could significantly improve its balance of payments, at least in the medium term. Restrictions on trade operations and difficulties with payments have given Russia a trade surplus, meaning its exports (mainly commodities) prevail over imports, which is generally good for the economy.
Even if Western countries and their allies completely refuse to buy Russian coal and metals, this will not significantly reduce Russia’s export earnings, experts believe.
“The medium-term stability of the trade balance is good. Both 1991 and 1998 crises happened with a weak trade balance,” economist Sergei Khestanov, Associate Professor at RANEPA, said.
At the same time, the expert emphasized that it is too early to discuss any long-term trends:
“Things are changing too fast in our world.”