The Central Bank's gold and currency reserves reached $55.8bn on April 4, having grown by $400m over the last week. With $900m in growth over the previous week, the two weeks' aggregate increase of the gold and currency reserves comes to $1.3bn. The Central Bank's total gold and currency gain since the beginning of the year amounts to $8bn. According to commercial bank traders, such growth is due to the bulk purchases of dollars both at the currency market and directly from exporters. Last year's currency purchases were smaller, resulting in only a $1.2bn increase in gold and currency reserves after the first three months, i.e. some seven times less than in the same period of 2003.
Rescuers found the pilot of one of the two Su-34 fighters that had collided in midair in the Far East on January 18