Reserves as never before
By Alexey Overyanov
In 2011, our reserves (as defined by the IMF) rose by $2,885,200,000 — up over 57 percent. These considerably outstrip the forecast (envisaged by the monetary-credit policy for 2011, which estimated $6,230,700,000 by January 1st, 2012).
Considerable growth in gold and currency reserves in late 2011 was influenced by the arrival of $2.5bn, from the sale of the remaining 50 percent of Beltransgas’ shares. In December, the second tranche of funds also arrived from the EurAsEC Anti-Crisis Fund (worth $440m) as did a syndicated loan worth $1bn, from Sberbank of Russia and the Eurasian Development Bank (allocated to Belaruskali JSC). Meanwhile, the Government and the National Bank have fully met their external and internal obligations in foreign currency.
Belarus’ gold and currency reserves are currently sufficient to cover almost two months of imports. The National Bank prognoses that, by the end of 2012, the country’s international reserve assets should stand at $7bn (by IMF definition) — taking into account payment of external and internal obligations in foreign currency and the actuation of foreign investments into the national economy.