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4% of GDP Laundered

Some 4 percent of GDP was illegally withdrawn from the Russian economy last year by money laundering in Russia and abroad, posing a threat to national security, First Deputy Prime Minister Viktor Zubkov said during a video conference call with President Dmitry Medvedev on Thursday.

"Thorough analysis of the situation in the financial sphere, the situation with capital outflow and schemes to launder criminal funds inside the country has shown that of the $84 billion net outflow of capital in 2011, according to Central Bank and Rosinfomonitoring estimates, about 1 trillion rubles ($33 billion) was removed with signs of money laundering," Zubkov said during the call, Interfax reported.

Tens of billions of rubles are sitting "in exotic reinsurance markets like Tunisia, St. Louis, St. Kitts," Zubkov said.

"The law enforcement agencies are carrying out work" related to all companies suspected of involvement in laundering that trillion rubles, he said, "and criminal cases are being opened."


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