The impact of the pandemic and restrictions on the balance of payments increased in the second quarter

In the second quarter of 2020 has increased the influence of the pandemic coronavirus and related restrictive measures for balance of payments. Revenue from oil and gas exports declined due to the fall in both prices and physical volumes on the background of decreasing external demand, given the recession in the global economy, and also in connection with significant reduction of production in Russia in the framework of agreements on OPEC+, noted in a quarterly issue of information-analytical review “the balance of payments of Russia”1.

The reduction in exports was partially offset by a compression of imports and a decrease in the deficit of the balance of other components of the current account. Imports of goods decreased because of reduced domestic demand in a pandemic and restrictive measures, and also due to the weakening of the ruble. Import of services on the item “Travel” has almost ceased due to the closure of international passenger traffic.

With the downturn in the global economy and investor risk aversion decreased, net attraction of foreign capital to other sectors, the liabilities of banks continued to decline rate is somewhat higher than in the same period last year.

Sale of foreign currency in the framework of fiscal rules led to a decrease in reserve assets. However, the total level of international reserves for the quarter increased as revaluation surplus, due mainly to the increase in world gold prices, offset the decrease due to transactions reflected in balance of payments.

1 In the commentary on the balance of payments provided a preliminary assessment of its performance in the second quarter of 2020 and the actual data on international reserves.