Deputy head of the military-civilian administration for the Kherson region Kirill Stremousov announced the introduction of the ruble zone in the region from May 1. According to him, the transition period will take up to four months, during this period the ruble and hryvnia will circulate in the region, and then it will completely switch to payments in rubles.
In an initial statement, Stremousov said that “the issue of returning the Kherson region back to Nazi Ukraine is out of the question.”
“Kyiv will no longer be able to impose its ugly Nazi policy on our land, aimed at destroying people and their identity. The future of the Kherson region is promising and without any fears. No referenda are planned. Ukrainian propagandists are spreading fake stories about the creation of the Kherson People’s Republic in order to intimidate the local population. The Kherson region will develop and turn into a flourishing region in which there will be no place for the ideology of Ukrainian Nazism,” he said.
Official Russian authorities have not yet commented on the information about the transition of the Kherson region to the ruble zone, as well as about the future of the region as a whole. Stremousov himself, on the air of the Rossiya-24 TV channel on Thursday, April 28, clarified his statement, saying that the transition to rubles is necessary due to the flight of Ukraine’s financial structures and the lack of money supply to fulfill obligations to citizens.
“Over the past month, the pension fund, the treasury left the territory of the Kherson region. Accordingly, people today are left without payments, without money supply, therefore, from May 1, we plan to introduce a ruble zone of assistance, first of all, to pensioners, socially unprotected segments of the population and, of course, state employees. We plan to completely switch to rubles in the next 4-5 months,” said the deputy head of the military-civilian administration.
Stremousov noted that at the moment a double price tag in rubles and hryvnias is being considered in the Kherson region, “but, as practice shows, people today have neither rubles nor hryvnias in sufficient quantities.” In addition, the official said that the city is returning to life, economic ties with the Donbass and Crimea have resumed.
According to the Russian Ministry of Defense, the entire territory of the Kherson region is under the control of the Russian Federation. At the same time, the situation in the region cannot be called completely calm.
According to the Russian Defense Ministry, on the night of April 28, the Ukrainian armed forces launched a massive missile strike with Tochka-U ballistic missiles and high-powered multiple rocket launchers on residential areas in the central part of the city of Kherson. The Russian air defense units repelled the attack, shooting down twelve high-powered multiple rocket launchers and two Tochka-Us. Local residents in social networks write that TV towers were damaged by rockets or their fragments, after which Russian TV channels stopped broadcasting for some time. But the damage was non-critical, broadcasting was restored.
As for the transition of the region to the ruble zone, on the one hand, this is due to practical necessity. Blogger Boris Rozhin (colonelcassad) believes that the transition of the Kherson region to rubles can develop according to the scenario of the LPR and the DPR.
“The real economic integration of the DPR and LPR with Russia began precisely with the transition of the republics to rubles within a few months, after which the hryvnia naturally disappeared from circulation, which Ukraine actively helped with its “economic blockade”, which led to the economic isolation of the region from Ukraine. Accordingly, the refusal of Kyiv from economic obligations to the inhabitants of the Kherson and Zaporozhye regions, coupled with the transition of the liberated territories to the ruble zone, will lead to their economic isolation of Ukraine with the gradual withering away of most of the existing economic ties, which will be reoriented to Russia in a natural way. Under these conditions, the strengthening of the work of military-civilian administrations, coupled with economic isolation from Ukraine, lays the groundwork for the future political decision on the fate of these territories,” Rozhin wrote in his Telegram channel.
Candidate of Economic Sciences, head of the Union of Entrepreneurs and Tenants of Russia Andrey Bunich also believes that in the current situation, the transition to the ruble zone is the only possible option for the Kherson region.
– The region is under the control of Russian troops, the Ukrainian leadership has ceased to fulfill its functions. But somehow it is necessary to carry out economic activities, social payments. It is logical that the region will simply be attached to the ruble zone.
There are precedents in the world when countries that do not have their own emission use one or another currency. The same Montenegro was not included in the euro zone and is not included, but uses the euro. Here, the region is located next to Russia, under the control of Russian forces and may today be completely in the ruble zone. Moreover, I see no other way to organize economic activity in these conditions.
If these were already some entities, like the same DPR and LPR, where the question of their own banknotes and means of payment was raised, options would be possible. But nothing of the kind can happen here, since the situation is uncertain, the status of the region has not been established. When this status is determined, other solutions will be possible. And now this is the most logical way out.
Technically, the transition to rubles, most likely, will be associated with the Crimea, which is located nearby. There are all federal structures, all financial bodies, so there should be no problems in organizing money circulation. As an emergency measure, this is perfectly acceptable.
On the other hand, as indicated political scientist Pavel Salinthe success of this measure will depend on the course of the special military operation itself. It is too early to compare Kherson, for example, with Abkhazia, where, in addition to its own Apsara currency, the Russian ruble is officially in circulation, it is still too early, since the conflict there is not in a hot phase.
– You need to understand what opportunities Moscow has to control the situation, but they are not yet one hundred percent. On the territory of Ukraine, hostilities continue, and events may develop according to completely different scenarios. This statement, like yesterday’s information that the supervision of the LPR and DPR within the presidential administration has shifted from a foreign policy bloc to an internal political bloc led by Kiriyenko, is a signal of the scenario desired by the Kremlin. But it is not a fact that these desires will coincide with the possibilities.
The dynamics may be different, so there is no official confirmation from Moscow yet. The authorities will observe how events develop throughout May. The soft introduction of the ruble may begin, but at a semi-official level. In reality, everything will depend on the final outcome of the Ukrainian campaign.
“SP”: – Is it possible to compare the transition to rubles in the Kherson region, for example, with Abkhazia?
– We cannot yet draw analogies with the Abkhazian, Transnistrian or any scenario for one simple reason – there is no de jure point, but it stands de facto. There are no fighting. On the territory of Ukraine, the end has not been set either de jure or de facto, so the political situation may change.