Working for the Future
GDP growth in Belarus will be propelled by the traditional and new economies in 2017
In recent years, Belarus’ economy has been struggling with the impact of large external shocks. The slump in oil prices and the unfavorable situation on the market of potash fertilizers, metallurgy and other industries threatened to frustrate the country’s economic development plans. However, the government managed to secure sustainable growth and reverse the negative trends. The most important target for 2017 is restoring economic growth and creating an enabling environment for achieving the goals of Belarus’ development program until 2020.
Guided by Five-year Term Priorities
Taking into consideration the external shocks, the government and the National Bank undertook decisive measures to consolidate the budget and to rectify the balance of payments at the start of 2016. That could not but curb economic growth, investment activity and household revenues. However, it helped achieve macroeconomic stability.
The country honors all its obligations and pays out foreign currency debts on time. Belarus has achieved balance in foreign trade in goods and services and has posted a trade surplus over the past nine months. The forex market has settled down. The situation on the credit and debit market has improved. The inflation rate remains within the projected level. The overall statistics demonstrate economic recovery.
At the same time, the government needs to mobilize resources to safeguard economic growth, Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko said as he heard out a report of the government about the economic performance in 2016, the draft forecast, budget and monetary policy for 2017. In his words, it is essential to hit these targets using internal reserves, cutting-edge technologies and expertise.
“This year the Belarusian People’s Congress passed a resolution concerning the most important aspects of the country’s development and approved major provisions of Belarus’ social and economic development program till 2020. It is important to make sure that the forthcoming annual plans and forecasts should be aimed at the fulfillment of the priorities set out in this document,” the head of state noted.
The program indicates that Belarus’ main development goal for the current five-year term is to improve the living standards by increasing the competitiveness of the economy, attracting investments and encouraging innovative development. Belarus is projected to witness GDP growth of 12-15% by 2020 over 2015. The country is set to have a 9.5-11.6% increase in real