Antifake / Factcheck

05 June

‘Europe Increasing Ruble-Denominated Trade with Russia’. Fact-Checking of Gomel TV’s False Claim

The WTF’s revealing the truth behind Russia’s alleged receiving record revenue in rubles for exports from European countries.

According to Belarusian state-run regional TV Gomel, there was an increase in trade between Russia and the EU, despite the war in Ukraine and sanctions. The Weekly Top Fake team investigated how state media employees reached their conclusions.

Mikhail Sadovsky, the host of the “Novosti Seti” program on Gomel TV, reported on air on May 28 that the European Union is continuing to trade with Russia on more advantageous terms for Moscow.

“It's simply more profitable to trade with Russia than with Lithuania, even with unprecedented sanctions in place. The European Union keeps trading with Russia, despite grand statements to the contrary. In March, the Russian Federation received record revenue in rubles from exports to European countries. The share of the Russian currency was 58.5%. The energy sector played a major role in this, experts say. Let me explain: The Old World not only hasn't stopped trading with Russia but continues on terms more favorable to Russia. Checkmate to the overdue Zelensky,” Sadovsky stated.

To support his claims, the host displayed an article from the RBC's website but didn't specify that it includes Belarus in the “Europe” region. Most of the payments between both countries are carried out in Russian rubles.

Consequently, if trade with EU countries is declining, but supplies to Belarus remain stable or increase, this is reflected in the statistics as an increase in the share of ruble settlements. Russia could have increased crude oil supplies to Belarus, hence the growth in ruble-based energy settlements, the article notes.

According to Eurostat data, EU imports from Russia have fallen nine-fold since the start of the full-scale war in Ukraine, and EU exports to Russia have decreased by a third.

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