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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Bank Ban Lifted

As of Jan. 1, the ban on foreign banks working with Russian residents has been lifted. The increased presence of foreign banks conducting operations in Russia has evoked concern in the last few years within domestic banking circles. However, it is doubtful that lifting the current limits on foreign banks will have much influence on Russia's financial markets ...

Concerning Russian clients, there is little expectation for a mass migration to solid foreign banks. First and foremost, these banks' services are substantially more expensive than those of domestic banks ... but the most important thing is that foreign banks themselves will not want to work with today's Russian ventures, who [from the foreign banker's perspectives] do not meet solvency and reliability criteria ...

However, freeing up the activities of foreign banks in Russia is of significance in one other way. In the last few years, Russian banks have been penetrating the countries of the West, but they have been far from unhindered. Therefore, in the process of granting licenses to foreign banks, the Russian Central Bank is counting on a degree of openness for Russian banks in those countries whose banks are intending to begin operations in Russia.

Izvestia, Jan. 11