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LONDON: Russia has charged up to third place in a list of countries outside mainland China using the yuan for global payments, highlighting how it is being affected by Western sanctions.

Russia had not even been on the monthly list published by global financial messaging firm SWIFT before its invasion of Ukraine in February, but latest figures released on Thursday showed that only Hong Kong and financial powerhouse Britain are now ahead of it.

Russian firms and banks were involved in almost 4% of international yuan payments by value in July, according to SWIFT. That was up from 1.42% the previous month and from zero in February when the Kremlin’s action in Ukraine, which Moscow calls a “special military operation”, triggered sanctions.

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