Exports should be profitable

Export issues remain nationwide priority

Export issues remain nationwide priority  

Under present conditions, manufacturers are seeing sales volumes grow, while receiving far less revenue, due to falling global prices. The recent sitting of the Council of Ministers’ Presidium investigated ways for our manufacturers to master new markets and compete as global leaders, within the 2016-2020 draft national programme for export support and development.

“According to forecasts for 2016, the general sales growth index, in products and services, should reach 103.5 percent, with 101.1 percent planned for the first quarter. So far, over the first four months of the year, we’ve registered a growth index of only 83.9 percent, despite selling more volumes than last year: from January-April 2016, the growth index of physical volumes stood at 102.2 percent. To preserve our competitiveness on foreign markets, our companies need to reduce prime costs, enabling them to pursue a more flexible pricing policy,” asserts Prime Minister Andrei Kobyakov.

While volumes of exports have risen by 6 percent, resulting revenue has fallen by 6.4 percent on our strategic Russian market. The PM stated that the same negative trend is evident in our sales to the EU, with Belarus having lost over 32 percent in revenue there. Income from fuel-and energy supply to the West has fallen considerably, as have profits from metal produce and machine building manufacture.

We need to find new markets, such as that in Iran, encouraging our exporters to take advantage of all openings there, as well as in China and Vietnam. The 2016-2020 national programme of export support and development — based on best global practice — should facilitate work under today’s economic conditions, as will liaisons with the private sector and listening to recommendations from Belarus’ business associations.

By Galina Kononova
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