Russia cannot completely avoid using the US dollar as an accounting currency with partner countries, Economy Minister Alexei Ulyukayev told the television channel Russia Today on Thursday.
“There are positions where we cannot completely avoid using the dollar, but there are also those where we should reduce its use and replace by the Chinese yuan, South Korean won, Vietnamese dong, and so on,” Ulyukayev said. “This is quite normal between countries having full-fledged trade and investment relations.”
Speaking about the forthcoming meeting of trade ministers of Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation states in China, Ulyukayev said participants would discuss a whole range of trade and investment problems, including infrastructure development in the Asia-Pacific region.
“We have something we might suggest to our counterparts,” he said.
In China, the minister will hold a number of meetings including economics ministers of China, Indonesia and Malaysia.
“We increase our trade turnover and we significantly enhance mutual investments,” Ulyukayev said. “If we measure this turnover and these investments relative to GDP, we shall see there is wide room for growth, and we will work on it.”
“We hope to complete preparatory work on creating a free trade zone with Vietnam,” he said. “The same work is under way with New Zealand, and it has been started with India and other countries.”
The next step on the agenda is a multilateral free trade zone, the minister added.
“These talks are still incipient, though they have already lasted for several years,” he said. “Issues under discussion are still non-specific. Certainly we would like to move forward in this sphere,” he added.