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Russian Current Account Surplus Drops Despite Higher Exports to China

The Central Bank of Russia reported a declining current account surplus in Q2 2023 for the fourth consecutive quarter. The surplus in Q2 2023 is the lowest since Q4 2020, when COVID-19 hit.

Russia’s central bank argues that total exports in particular are falling, although exports to China have risen sharply recently and are close to record highs according to Chinese customs service data.

Although Russia is currently still running a modest current account surplus, it has clearly not been able to fully replace its lost business with the West more than a year after the first sanctions were imposed.