The financial sphere of Russia will suffer first of all if the country is disconnected from the international system of transfer of interbank payments SWIFT, Pavel Sigal, the first vice-president of Opora Rossii, told Izvestia on Thursday, April 29.
The day before, on April 28, the European Parliament published a draft resolution proposing to disconnect Russia from the international SWIFT system and abandon oil and gas “in the event of continued aggression in Ukraine.”
However, it should be borne in mind that the shutdown is unlikely to become global and will affect absolutely all domestic banks, Pavel Sigal noted.
“Most likely, the largest financial institutions in the country can turn off and then their costs for international transfers will increase, they will need to be carried out not directly to counterparties abroad, but through third countries,” said the first vice president of Opora Rossii.
According to him, this is how Iran acted, where the banking system was also not completely disconnected from the SWIFT system – it affected half of the organizations in the financial sector.
“For Russians, these perspectives make little difference. The main difficulties will affect Russian business, which may have temporary delays in receiving money from foreign clients or transferring funds to them, ”the expert emphasized.
According to him, on the territory of the country, banks may well be able to switch to the Russian analogue of the international system of bank payments – the System for the transmission of financial messages (SPFS).
Thus, ordinary Russians are unlikely to notice any changes in the work of banks, concluded Pavel Sigal.
In turn, the first deputy head of the international committee of the Federation Council, Vladimir Dzhabarov, said on April 29 that the European Union would have to pay for oil in cash in suitcases if Russia was disconnected from the international system for transferring interbank payments SWIFT.
Earlier, on April 22, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba called on the EU to consider the possibility of “disconnecting Russia” from SWIFT. In his opinion, such a measure could be included in a new package of anti-Russian sanctions in the event of an escalation of the situation in eastern Ukraine.
The Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunications (SWIFT) is an international interbank system for data transmission and payments, to which more than 11 thousand of the largest organizations are connected in almost all countries of the world.
The Russian financial messaging system began to develop in December 2014. Its launch was associated with an appeal by the European Parliament to exclude the Russian Federation from international payments via SWIFT against the backdrop of events in Crimea and eastern Ukraine.