Western Sanctions Targeting Russians Failed, PM Mishustin Says
09:36 GMT 23.03.2023 (Updated: 18:05 GMT 23.03.2023)
© Sputnik / Dmitry Astakhov / Go to the mediabankRussian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin speaks in parliament on March 23, 2023
© Sputnik / Dmitry Astakhov/
The US and its allies slapped packages of sanctions on Russia shortly after Moscow had launched its special military operation in Ukraine.
Russian Prime Minister Mishustin stated on Thursday that the US-led Western sanctions barrage targeting Russians has failed.
"At the very beginning, the West tried to assure that the sanctions were not directed against our citizens. And at the time, there were no illusions on this score. But now, even a person far removed from global politics understands that the main target was precisely the Russian people," the prime minister emphasized during his speech at the State Duma, Russia's lower house.
He said that the West "stopped at nothing", even going as far as blowing up the Nord Stream gas pipeline network and seizing banking accounts.
Also, they "disconnected [Russia] from the international payment system, trying to block all banking and any other economic activity [of the country]," Mishustin pointed out.
The Russian PM emphasized that despite the sanctions, "goods and services-related payments as well as money transfers are being carried out just like before."
"All bank cards in Russia that were previously in use are still working. The government also managed to reduce inflationary pressure and preserve the banking sector’s stability," Mishustin stressed.
He recalled that last spring, "analysts were predicting a probable double-digit decline in Russia’s gross domestic product (GDP),” but he emphasized "we weathered the storm." "It was a tricky task. The economic slowdown, [which was] inevitable under such conditions, was quite mild. Nevertheless, We’ve put the economy back on the growth track," he added.
The Russian prime minister highlighted that in this regard the government had created “all the necessary work conditions for those companies that see their future in Russia, including firms from unfriendly states.”
"Despite all the restrictions, the negation of property rights, and the discriminatory measures that Russian businesses faced in the West, foreign companies feel comfortable when working in Russia," Mushustin noted. He warned that “if foreign firms ditch their business operations in Russia and fail to take care of the future of their enterprises and employees, we will protect the interests of our people."
The PM cautioned that “external pressure” on the Russian economy is unlikely to show signs of easing any time soon, and that “the period of [the economy’s] adaptation will end in 2024. Moreover, Russia will embark on the path of long-term progressive development.”
Last year, Western governments began to slap sweeping sanctions on the Russian economy over Moscow's special military operation in Ukraine. However, these measures finally boomeranged on the economies of the US-led West as these restrictive measures sent inflation (especially in the energy sector) skyrocketing to record highs while simultaneously driving their societies into a cost of living crisis.