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Russia pledges billions in investment to help rescue the eurozone

Posted by seumasach on December 16, 2011

Deutsche Welle

15th December, 2011

Speaking at the close of what was his final summit with the EU as Russian president, Dmitry Medvedev offered his solidarity with the bloc, saying Russia was willing to contribute to the rescue plan managed by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for the struggling euro currency.

“We are ready to invest all financial means to back the European economy and the eurozone,” Medvedev said following talks with European leaders.

The EU must be “preserved as a powerful political and economic force … [and the euro] preserved as one of the most important reserve currencies,” he added. The EU is Russia’s biggest trading partner.

Although the president didn’t mention specific figures, his economic advisor, Arkady Dvorkovich, said earlier on Thursday Moscow was prepared to offer up to 20 billion euros ($26 billion). That figure was dependent on progress towards a 200-billion-euro boost for the IMF agreed by European Union leaders, Dvorkovich said.

EU states have until Monday to work out the details of a number of bilateral loans to the IMF which are to be used in efforts to stabilize the eurozone.

With 41 percent of Russia’s currency reserves held in the euro and half of all Russian external trade conducted with the EU, Russia’s interests in the survival of the euro are clear.

“Europe has a stake in Russia’s success as I believe Russia has a stake in Europe’s success,” European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso commented on Thursday. “We should strive for a comprehensive and broad agreement with ambitious trade and energy chapters.”

Full article

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