The way the West has treated ordinary Russians is “beyond good and evil,” Sber’s CEO has claimed
“Inhumane” Western sanctions imposed on ordinary Russian investors have undermined international markets and will harm future investment prospects, the CEO of top Russian lender Sber, Herman Gref, warned on Wednesday.
In an interview with Russia 24 on the sidelines of the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok, Gref claimed that trust in the markets themselves had not been destroyed, but rather “in those issuers, or in those countries that have introduced completely, in my opinion, inhumane sanctions against people.”
“The way they treated ordinary investors, ordinary people who invested in papers, entrusted their money to the largest international companies, in my opinion, this is beyond good and evil.”
At the same time, Gref emphasized that confidence in the stock market itself could hardly be eroded, adding that it should be taken for what it is, “with all its pros and cons such as volatility on which some make money and others lose.”
The stock market will always “play a very big role” because “there is no other way to make money for the majority of investors in the world,” the banker noted.
Hundreds of billions of dollars’ worth of Russian state assets and funds belonging to its citizens have been frozen by the EU, US, and their allies as part of sanctions related to the Ukraine conflict.
Russia’s central bank previously estimated that nearly 20% of the assets held at Western financial institutions were owned by Russian retail investors.
Last week, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov warned that any attempts to use Russian funds blocked by the US and its European allies would eventually lead to legal action, adding that “none of the cases of such illegal retention will be left without attention.”
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