Russia's finance ministry said on Monday it would sell 3.6 billion roubles' ($44.3 million) worth of foreign currency a day between June 7 and July 6, an increase in the volume of daily operations from the previous month.
After a hiatus of several months, Russia resumed foreign currency interventions in January, selling yuan rather than what it terms "unfriendly" Western currencies, underscoring the growing importance of China's currency in Moscow's efforts to ensure economic stability amid Western sanctions.
The finance ministry said its regular FX sales on the market would total 74.6 billion roubles over the coming month. Analysts surveyed by Reuters had predicted sales would total 20 billion roubles.
In the previous period, between May 10 and June 6, the ministry had planned to sell 40.4 billion roubles' worth of foreign currency to compensate for lower oil and gas revenues.
Russia halted forex interventions last year as Western nations imposed sweeping sanctions against Moscow, including freezing about $300 billion in foreign exchange reserves, after it sent its armed forces into Ukraine.
The government carries out forex interventions to cover shortfalls - or build up reserves in the event of a surplus - in earnings from Russia's vital oil and gas exports, revenues from which have shrunk this year due to Western sanctions.
The ministry said May's oil and gas revenues were 30.6 billion roubles below plan. It said it expected a 44-billion-rouble shortfall from federal energy revenues in June.
Reduced revenues and soaring spending pushed Russia's Jan-April budget deficit to almost $44 billion, already 17% higher than the target for all of 2023, creating fiscal pressure as Moscow ploughs on with its military offensive in Ukraine. ($1 = 81.2075 roubles) (Reporting by Darya Korsunskaya and Alexander Marrow; Editing by Toby Chopra and Sharon Singleton)