Nearly two trillion rubles ($66.2 billion) or four percent of the country's gross domestic product left Russia last year in apparent money laundering schemes, First Deputy Prime Minister Viktor Zubkov said on Thursday.
"About two trillion rubles left our economy ... nearly four percent of GDP. This influences the country's economic development negatively, brings down stimuli to attract investment and poses a serious threat to national security," Zubkov told President Dmitry Medvedev.
Zubkov said that about one trillion rubles ($32 billion) was siphoned off the country through shell companies registered in such countries as Cyprus, St. Lucia and the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis.
As for money laundering within the country, about $32 billion was cashed out illegally.
"According to information from law enforcement agencies, some banks were established only for shadow operation provision," the deputy prime minister said.
Zubkov heads an inter-departmental working group to combat illegal financial operations analyzing the main types of money laundering schemes and mapping out specific methods to cut short these activities.