Official outlines Russian economic outlooks

By the year 2007, the ruble will become convertible, Russian Senior Deputy Finance Minister Alexey Ulyukayev announced in an interview with RBC TV. According to him, this conclusion was drawn from a new law on currency operations, under which Russian citizens may make any capital transaction starting in 2007, i.e. buy real estate, stocks and take loans. The official indicated that this law would drastically improve the Russian investment climate. "I have always been of the opinion that economic growth depends on growth in investments, and the better the investment climate, the faster economic growth", Ulyukayev emphasized. He also pointed to the importance of the free floating of capital in spite of certain risks. Such risks are due to the fact that under erroneous macroeconomic policies the influx of foreign capital may be followed by capital flight, Ulyukayev specified.

The official added that this year Russia had good chances that both its Fitch and S&P credit ratings would be increased. "An increase in credit ratings will turn the situation with foreign investments about", Ulyukayev pointed out.

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