Russia said Greece could get financing from the New Development Bank operated by Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) if it buys a few shares of the institution to become a member. The bank, which is set to begin operations next April, is seen an alternative to Western financing.
Deputy Russian Finance Minister Sergey Storchak said becoming a part of the bank would require Greek officials to make a political decision.
"We do not have any co-relation between a contribution and an amount of funding,” Russian news agency Tass quoted Storchak as saying. “There is general agreement that the system of the countries’ assets will be balanced."
Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said Tuesday it is necessary for the new bank to "carve out a niche" since competition among international banks is intense. He is scheduled to attend a meeting in Ufa, Russia, with other BRICS representatives.
Siluanov said the European Union and the International Monetary Fund should have acted sooner to solve the Greek debt crisis. He said Greece would need to “work on getting its liabilities in line with the possibilities of its economy” before joining BRICS, adding Russia never considered lending money to Athens because Greek authorities didn't ask. Siluanov’s deputy said the new bank would start considering membership applications after starting operations.
Storchak said gaining BRICS membership should not be a problem for Greece.
The BRICS bank is expected to be capitalized initially at $50 billion, with likely growth to $100 billion.