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Austria seizes Russian government assets; half of Russian foreign currency reserves under threat

Russian government assets are arrested in Austria, reports RIA Novosti.

Earlier, Russian state property was seized in Belgium and France. It will reportedly cover a court settlement compensating shareholders of Yukos oil company. Assets under arrest include property belonging to the Russian Orthodox Church, accounts of TASS and Russia Today news agencies. The Russian Foreign Ministry has threatened Belgium to arrest its assets in Russia.

Meanwhile, as finanz.ru informs, while Russia is intending to appeal against actions of bailiffs, the USA, the UK, the Netherlands and Germany are preparing to take analogous measures against it. Lawyer Tim Osborne, who represents Yukos shareholders in The Hague, warned about it as early as late in May.

The assets under arrest might be not only buildings and accounts belonging to Russian state-run companies. Lawyers say, at least half of Russia’s foreign currency reserves can be under threat. It includes reserves of the Russian Finance Ministry that owns the Reserve Fund and the National Wealth Fund, which account for 4152.1 bn of the total Russian foreign reserves. The rest of it, $208 bn, is managed by the Central Bank. According to the Central bank report, not a cent of the sum is in Russia.

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