The finance ministry said it converted foreign currency it had in its reserve fund into rubles and channeled more than 1 trillion rubles ($17.53 billion) to cover budget deficit in December.
The National Wealth Fund, which is designed to help balance the pension system, fell to $65.15 billion as of Jan. 1. from $66.94 billion as of Dec. 1.
The reserve fund is part of the country’s gold and forex reserves that stood at $432 billion as of Dec. 22.
In 2018, the Russian budget deficit will amount to 1,271 trillion rubles. Of these, 1,114 trillion roubles it is planned to pay the expense of the NWF.
In 2019-2020, the state budget will remain deficit 819 billion in 2019 and 870 billion in 2020.
Russia’s military budget peaked in 2015 and will be $41 billion in 2018.