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Russia ‘Actively’ Working on SWIFT Alternatives, Foreign Ministry Official Says

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Russia ‘Actively’ Working on SWIFT Alternatives, Foreign Ministry Official Says

The Russian Federation is collaborating with partners to link payment systems alternative to the interbank messaging system SWIFT, a representative of the country’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced. The work is part of the de-dollarization of the economy, the official indicated.

Russia Seeking to Substitute SWIFT in Trade as Part of De-dollarization Policy

The Russian government is actively involved in joint efforts with partners to pair national payment systems alternative to SWIFT, Dmitry Birichevsky, director of the Department of Economic Cooperation of the Russian Foreign Ministry, told journalists at the sidelines of the International Economic Forum “Russia – Islamic World: Kazan Forum.”

In the context of the beginning de-dollarization of the economy, one of the main conditions for the stable development of trade, economic, and investment ties is the availability of an independent payment and settlement infrastructure, Birichevsky elaborated quoted by the Tass news agency.

“We are actively working on this. We need to interface national payment systems, alternative to SWIFT, and extend these payment systems to our trade,” the diplomat emphasized. He pointed out that Moscow is giving priority to the matter with the understanding that “the rejection of the Western-centric financial system in favor of a multi-currency world is inevitable in foreseeable future.”

Birichevsky highlighted that many Islamic countries “are at the forefront of this trend.” He also stressed that in that regard, Russia is paying considerable attention to the interests of its partners and its own interest in cooperation within the format of Islamic banking.

The Russian Federation has been dealing with unprecedented Western sanctions imposed over its military invasion of Ukraine, including cutting off Russian banks from the world’s most widely used interbank payment system.

As part of a policy to reduce dependence on the U.S. dollar in foreign trade, last month Russia and Venezuela revealed they are working to develop an alternative to SWIFT. There have been also attempts to build blockchain-based analogs that would prevent disconnections of participating nations and banks. A similar project, for stablecoins and central bank digital currencies, was announced by the company developing China’s state-backed blockchain network.

Do you think Russia and its allies will be able to create a SWIFT alternative? Share your thoughts on the subject in the comments section below.

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