The situation in Ukraine and effects of Ukraine-related Western anti-Russian sanctions came up during conversations on the fringes of a meeting in Washington of Group of 20 finance ministers and central bank governors, Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said.
"Yes, it certainly has been discussed on the margins," Siluanov told reporters in answering a question. "Everyone is talking on the margins about their desire that the situation in southeastern Ukraine should be resolved as soon as possible, and their desire to get the sanctions behind them because obviously they hinder their own business development, the stimulation of the economy."
"Nobody needs these sanctions. They run against our tasks of supporting economic growth," the minister said.
He said the 12-point peace plan for Ukraine that has been agreed in Minsk is beginning to be implemented. "So, as regards the timeframe for the gradual lifting of these sanctions, we would like to hope that they're not around for a long time," Siluanov said.
He pointed out that the sanctions were also slowing economic growth in Europe. "We have a considerable volume of trade with European countries, especially Germany. Nevertheless, our colleagues have gone ahead with [the sanctions], despite their own economic losses," he said.
He mentioned the latest International Monetary Fund gloomy forecast for the world economy. "The sanctions make this negative forecast worse," he said.
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