Situation requires active decisions
Banking system should facilitate economy
During a working meeting with Belarus’ Prime Minister, Andrei Kobyakov, and the Chairman of the National Bank’s Board, Pavel Kallaur, the President of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko, noted that he hadn’t recently interfered with issues regarding the development of the banking system, foreign currency market, and monetary sector. At the same time, he stressed that we must not bring the economy to a standstill. “All systems (in the banking sector) should be normal, transparent, and understandable for our partners, including market participants in the West. I don’t deny it. Meanwhile, the economy should work,” emphasised the Head of State.
Answering journalists’ questions, Mr. Kallaur noted that, despite existing challenges and internal problems, the economy and the banking system should interact to ensure economic growth and a balanced macroeconomic situation. “Under these conditions, it’s important for the banking system to provide a corresponding resource base, to support the private sector, so the banking system is doing so,” said the Head of the National Bank. “Daily interaction with enterprises allows banks to ensure financing of the economy, while attracting resources on external markets.”
As far as problematic issues are concerned, credit risks, accumulated as a result of external shocks, are materialising in the form of bad assets. “We must control the volume of bad assets, to avoid threatening the stability of the banking system. These issues are high on the agenda,” notes the Chairman of the National Bank’s Board.
Calm, well-organised redenomination in Belarus is also important politically
The President commented, “I’ve been told that the National Bank and the Government have done much to ensure a calm transition to our new money. People are now anticipating the move, which is important for everyone. It’s a major event, even from a political point of view, so should be well organised.”
The Head of State also noted that the redenomination, though largely unpopular, will take place in the run-up to parliamentary elections. “It means that we aren’t afraid. We’re statesmen, not just politicians, and statesmen always think about long-term prospects of state development,” said Mr. Lukashenko.
The President explains that preparations in this direction have been ongoing for several years, being planned for launch on January 1st, 2017. He adds, “I’ve reduced the terms. There’s no sense in delaying, so we’ll act from July 1st, 2016.”
By Vladimir Khromov