BoB counts losses from Russian sanctions

On and on: Analysts believe Russia’s war in Ukraine may last through the year PIC: MARCA
On and on: Analysts believe Russia’s war in Ukraine may last through the year PIC: MARCA

The Bank of Botswana (BoB) expects to lose a total of P22.5 million due to the need to cash out of its Russian investments in the wake of that country’s invasion of Ukraine and the resultant sanctions.

According to the central bank’s 2021 Annual Report released last week, by the end of last year, the BoB held P9.1 million in bonds and P147.6 million in equities in Russia.

However, following sanctions against Moscow by the United States, the European Union and others, as well as the exclusion of that country’s banks from the global financial networks, the BoB had moved to liquidate its position in the Russian holdings.

As at March 2, the bonds had been sold off with a loss of P4.2 million, while losses in the equities were expected to result in a fair value of P130 million due to the closure of the Russian stock market.

The BoB said it continued to monitor the conflict and possible consequences with the intention to curb the financial risk on its investments.

The country’s foreign exchange reserves, which amounted to P56 billion at the end of last year, were invested in 13 out of the 22 eligible markets approved by the BoB. The reserves were measured at just below P56 billion as at May, due to softer returns on the assets invested as well as currency movements.

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