Russian President Vladimir Putin announced on Tuesday that a total of more than $20 billion in African debt was written off over the last year. President Putin also revealed that trade between Russia and Africa had almost reached $18 billion by the end of the year. According to the Russian leader, the majority of the world is opposed to the “neocolonial” ideology of the West.
Putin wants to boost trade between Russia and Africa
According to Russian President Vladimir Putin, in 2022, Moscow cancelled the debts of African countries totaling over $20 billion. In the same year, the trade volume between the two sides almost exceeded $18 billion.
Putin, who is also under Western sanctions, reportedly spoke at a recent international conferenceabout the possibility of increasing the amount of trade between the two regions.
Putin reportedly said, “Such a figure can never fully suit us, but we know that this is far from the limit.”
In addition to strengthening direct trade with the African continent, the Russian leader spoke of his vision of a global financial system not dominated by the US dollar. After Russia invaded Ukraine, the West responded by imposing sanctions on Moscow and separating Russia from the global financial system.
To counter Western moves, Russia has not only proposedalternatives to the dollar-dominated financial system, but has also signed bilateral agreements with countries such as China and India. In some agreements, its currency is used to settle trade.
“Commodity Competitive Exchange” Meanwhile, in his message to African countries, Putin also mentions the development of what he calls “counter-commodity exchanges.” The Russian leader argues that “a more vigorous transition of financial settlements to national currencies” and the “establishment of new transport and logistics chains” could facilitate the development of the envisioned commodity exchanges.
Putin said that the majority of the world still “adheres to the traditional moral norms and social principles for our peoples” and opposes ideals imposed from outside, arguing against what he called the “neo-colonialism” of Western countries.
Subscribe to our email here to receive weekly news from Africa.
Image Credits: Shutterstock, Pixabay, Wiki Commons, ID1974 / Shutterstock.com.