Russia's central bank only considered keeping its key rate unchanged at 16% at the March meeting, as it believes the current decline in inflation pressure is less pronounced than that in late 2023, it said on Monday.

According to the minutes of the March meeting published by the regulator, disinflation may require an additional rise in real rates and cutting rates too early could lead to a second wave of inflation that would be harder to combat.

(Reporting by Elena Fabrichnaya Writing by Olzhas Auyezov; Editing by Kirsten Donovan)