NEW DELHI, India: Due to long-running political tensions with its neighbor and rival China, India has ordered banks and traders to avoid using Chinese yuan to pay for Russian imports.
Now a leading buyer of discounted Russian oil and coal, India prefers to use United Arab Emirates dirham to settle trade, and said it is not comfortable with foreign trade settled in yuan. Further, India cannot settle in yuan until relations with China improve.
Since 2021, Indian and Chinese troops have been locked in a standoff along their disputed Himalayan border.
India's largest cement producer, UltraTech Cement, earlier paid for a cargo of Russian coal using Chinese yuan, raising concerns among officials in New Delhi.
Reuters has reported that in recent weeks, Indian refiners began settling some Russian oil purchases in roubles, with payments being processed, in part, by the State Bank of India via its roubles account in Russia.
However, as the rouble is only partially convertible and the two countries have yet to finalize a framework, the majority of their trade is still paid for in other currencies.
Due to India's well-established political and security ties with Russia, as well as the fact that it is a major buyer of Russian arms, it has not yet condemned Moscow's invasion of Ukraine.