In the wake of global sanctions, Russia’s central bank recently moved to fix the price of 5,000 rubles to a gram of gold. Then, its finance ministry announced that payments for oil, natural gas and other significant Russian exports would be required to be in rubles, rather than the U.S. dollar.
Christopher Mitchell, assistant professor of politics and international relations at Mount Holyoke, said in an article about Russia’s move to gold that the desire to supplant the U.S. dollar as the world’s reserve currency is not new.
“Historically the European Union wanted to do this,” he said. “I think there’s a global sense that the euro isn’t ready for that role until the EU supports it with a fiscal and political union. As long as they have these existential questions even as Europeans want to make a bid for it, there are too many questions about the EU and the Eurozone.”