Presidential Advisor on impact of war on Iraq on Russian economy

In the event the military operation in Iraq lasts from one to three weeks, which is the ideal scenario for the USA and Great Britain, this will not influence the Russian economy, Russian Presidential Economic Advisor Andrey Illarionov told journalists. In his opinion, if the war on Iraq leads to the considerable destruction of civilian facilities and damages oil deposits, a significant decrease in oil supplies from the region will follow, which will be impossible to compensate in the short term.

In Illarionov's opinion, the situation with OPEC demonstrated that real opportunities of additional oil supplies from its member countries were not as great as it was stated. In this situation, one can expect "a spike in oil prices", the Advisor believes. According to Illarionov, this will trigger an inflow of foreign currency and a ruble strengthening, which, in his opinion, could lead to a decline in the competitiveness of Russian processing industries.