Pattern of upward growth is observed

Economic results for first three months of the year discussed at Council of Ministers’ extended session

Economic results for first three months of the year discussed at Council of Ministers’ extended session, with Belarus’ Prime Minister, Andrei Kobyakov, noting that, in April, the country’s GDP rose by 0.6 percent (up from 95.7 percent of previous figure in January) showing growth trend

“The Government and the National Bank are consistently implementing a policy of macroeconomic balancing under conditions which significantly differ from those used in making the 2016 forecast,” notes Mr. Kobyakov. “In November-December 2015, when determining our country’s major macroeconomic figures, our economic department used figures which considerably differed from those we’re now dealing with. For example, oil prices have fallen from $50 per barrel to $32, while the exchange rate of the Russian Rouble has been 74 Roubles, instead of the planned 63 Roubles.” The PM underlines that stability has been ensured for the domestic currency market, regardless of difficulties, with the free-floating exchange rate enabling us to avoid too many troubles. Early in the year, Belarusian currency fell slightly in value but is now rising again against major reserve currencies, favourably influencing enterprises’ financial situation, especially those with foreign currency loans. As far as the Russian Rouble is concerned, the Belarusian Rouble has now reached its annual average predicted value of 297:1, allowing us to maintain the competitiveness of Belarusian goods within this strategic market. Mr. Kobyakov mentions that we have managed to preserve the balance of our foreign trade. From January to March 2016, the trade balance of goods and services was within the forecast, of minus 0.1 percent of GDP. “Moreover, we’ve repaid our debts on time, and without damaging our foreign currency reserves,” the PM emphasises.

By Alexander Benkovsky
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