Russia ready to spend reserve funds on EFSF bonds

Russia is ready to invest money from its Reserve Fund and National Wealth Fund in European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) bonds, Deputy Finance Minister Sergei Storchak said on Friday.

“Of course, we will do it and the minister’s view is that we will use this instrument,” Storchak told reporters, adding that the instrument should be developed with the help of the Europeans.

The European Union formed the EFSF in May 2010 to support to economically weak members such as Ireland and Greece. The fund now amounts to 750 billion euros, including 440 billion euros under EU states’ guarantees.

The EFSF planned to float bonds worth 16 billion euros this year. Fitch Ratings agency has assigned an AAA rating to the fund’s bond program.

“(The bonds) should get on to their feet and become an institution. It is not just a piggy bank, it is a serious institution, a borrower on its own, whose paper must be rated AAA,” Storchak said. “This institution must get on to its feet in investment programs not only in Russia but also in hedge and pension funds.”

The process was long and he did not see the necessity to speed it up, he said.

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