Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov says the worst is over for the country’s economy following global oil declines and Western sanctions.
“The negative peak is behind us and instead we are seeing certain signs of stabilization,” he told a conference of the nation’s big-business lobby.
“The situation in the financial sector is also stabilizing. We see rising returns on debt markets, and the financial market is showing momentum toward growth,” Siluanov added.
The conference in Moscow was organized by the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs.
President Vladimir Putin urged Russian billionaires and business leaders to bring money back to the country from offshore accounts. He warned that funds kept abroad could be frozen.
Citing “disturbing information from a number of countries”, Putin said the US and the EU could impose further sanctions on Russia.
The Russian leader has already announced a capital amnesty under which funds brought back to the country would not face questions on tax and other issues.
The amnesty proposal came after Russia saw a record $151.5 billion pulled out of the country last year.
Russia is just entering a recession that’s ravaging industries from carmaking to banking.
On Wednesday, US carmaker General Motors said it was slashing production in Russia and pulling its mass-market Opel brand completely.
GM said the decision is likely to result in around $600 million in losses.
However, the financial turmoil wanes and the economy bottoms out amid “the process of adaptation to new economic conditions”, according to Minister Siluanov.
Russia’s current account in 2015 may post a surplus of about 6 percent of economic output and remain strong in the future, allowing the country to meet this year’s debt payments and overcome the impact of capital outflow, he said.