A Russian lawmaker has proposed legislation to ban dollar deposits and transactions from Russian banks, claiming the currency is on the brink of collapse.
Mikhail Degtyaryov, a member of the Liberal Democratic Party, said that if U.S. national debt continues to grow at current levels, the dollar will collapse by 2017, according to a story in the Moscow Times. Countries that depend on the currency would suffer “an economic disaster.”
The ban would take effect in a year after the bill’s passage. It stipulates that any holder of a dollar-denominated account would need to spend the money, convert it to rubles or another currency, or the bank will convert the account to rubles at the average exchange rate for the previous year.
Russians would still be allowed to hold dollar-denominated accounts in foreign banks, buy and sell dollars while abroad and engage in e-commerce using dollars.
According to the Times, it is unclear when the bill might have its first legislative hearing, and whether it has enough support in the pro-Kremlin legislature to be passed into law.
"In light of this, the fact that confidence in the dollar is growing among Russian citizens is extremely dangerous," Degtyaryov said in an explanatory note attached to the bill.