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Wednesday, 31 December, 1997, 17:34 GMT
New rouble introduced

Russia is introducing a new re-denominated rouble as part of a major currency reform aimed at boosting confidence after what the government says is a victory against inflation.

The bigger value roubles -- with three zeros less than the old ones -- come into circulation on New Year's day, although old ones will continue to be in use for another five years.

The launch follows a government campaign to reassure Russians that their savings will not be lost as a result of the change.

But the BBC Moscow correspondent says millions of Russians, who've lost their savings in similar reforms by Soviet governments, remain distrustful and some have already changed their money into dollars.

From the newsroom of the BBC World Service

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