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  Monday, November 30, 2020
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Those specific foreign banks, which are not incorporated inside Russia, shall have no right to open their affiliates there
This was disclosed in a RIA Novosti interview by first deputy Central Bank board chairman Andrei Kozlov. The Central Bank's position, as well as that during Russia's WTO (World Trade Organization)-membership talks, has two elements. First of all foreign banks having the status of separate legal entities on Russian territory shall enjoy almost the same rights as banks with Russian capital. However, those specific foreign banks, which are not incorporated inside Russia, shall not open their affiliates in this country, Kozlov noted. Technically speaking, such a possibility does exist, he said. However, the Central Bank's policy implies that we do not allow any foreign bank to directly open its affiliates here. Such banks should come to Russia, establishing their subsidiaries here. They, in turn, would set up affiliates; however, their direct establishment is impossible, Kozlov stressed. This expert-lingo aspect is formalized in our negotiating position; and a rather active discussion is now taking place in this connection, he added. Virtually all our foreign partners boasting well-developed financial markets continue to discuss this position with us in some form. Such talks are proceeding rather successfully with some of them, and vice versa, Kozlov told RIA Novosti. Still I have no right to disclose the details of such talks, Kozlov noted. According to Kozlov, this is an official Russian and Central Bank policy, which, nonetheless, hinders talks with the WTO. Our WTO partners perceive this as a serious problem for foreign banks. Meanwhile we believe that Russian banks would face serious problems, if we allowed direct affiliates, Kozlov informed RIA Novosti. In his opinion, the WTO does not demand that Russia provide foreign service sectors with uncompetitive advantages. We are ready to provide equal, but not the best, competitive opportunities to foreigners. Given the present-day Russian situation, direct affiliates are the best option, Kozlov noted in conclusion.
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