(Adds Economy Minister)
MOSCOW Jun 25 Russia is unlikely to ban major
companies from holding accounts at foreign banks as part of a
new law, as some media reports have suggested, First Deputy
Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov said.
Kommersant newspaper on Tuesday cited an unnamed source as
saying the Finance Ministry had prepared legal amendments that
would bar state companies, and private companies deemed to be of
strategic significance, from having accounts at foreign-owned
"In the (form of the) extremely tough position that was
published in the press, hardly anyone supports this law,"
Shuvalov told journalists on Wednesday.
"In such a form, I don't support it."
However, Shuvalov, seen as one of the most important
economic policymakers in President Vladimir Putin's government,
said that some form of law on accounts at foreign banks was
nevertheless in the works and would soon be ready for
consideration by the government.
"It is being pushed. There are pushers," he said.
The plan to change the law for banks is seen as a response
to threats of further Western sanctions against Russia over its
involvement in Ukraine.
Later on Wednesday, the Interfax news agency quoted Russia's
Economy Minister Alexei Ulyukayev as saying he believed the new
regulations on banks should take the form of capital
requirements rather than focus on the country of origin.
Analysts have criticised any plan to restrict Russian
companies' use of foreign-owned banks' services, saying it would
(Reporting by Darya Korsunskaya, writing by Jason Bush; Editing
by Susan Fenton/Ruth Pitchford)