Finance Minister Andrei Kharkovets praised the country's chances to get the IMF loan. "I hope that it would certainly be true in terms of community support of the country's economy and the efforts of government and National Bank, as it is international practice, when several institutions pool their resources, capabilities, intellectual potential, to harmonize their programs," he said.
«Chances to get IMF loan depends on estimates of IMF experts and the similarity of these estimates with Crisis Fund Community experts. In my view, the program, designed with Crisis Fund, is fairly well-developed and orients the economy for new goals. It covers all the main macroeconomic links: both monetary and fiscal policies,» said the head of the Treasury.
«In addition, the program involves adjustments to the budget sector and structural reforms. Therefore, Crisis Fund program is an analog of the standard conditions of international financial institutions to states, which are forced to adjust their macroeconomic policies for its stabilization,» said the Minister.
Finance Ministry expects the IMF proposals of greater performance or structural changes. «But I can’t find free niches for the International Monetary Fund to occupy in the structure of the program,» said Andrei Kharkovets, BelTA.
The head of the finance department also reported that the possibility of consolidation of the stabilization program agreed with the Fund and the IMF future program was under discussion at the EurAsEs Anti-Crisis Fund meeting.
Finance Ministry Revises System of Tax Remissions
«Given the reduction of the budget deficit, we must talk about the maximum consolidation of resources in the budget as measures of the stabilization program. Therefore, we associate the abolition of privileges, massive benefits, individual benefits, which influence on the enterprise is difficult to estimate, with the possibility of modernizing the tax system,» said Andrei Kharkovets.
«The thesis is that by eliminating tax breaks, we can undertake the reduction of tax burden in the country, in particular, cutting the income tax rate from 24% to 20%, in our view, seems economically reasonable and feasible,» he said.
In this regard, the Ministry of Finance will offer these steps as essential in improving tax administration in the draft budget for 2012.
Belarus won’t Get IMF loan without Political Changes, Diplomat
A diplomat from one of the European countries is skeptical considering the possibility of Minsk’s obtaining the IMF loan. According to him, the U.S. and the EU, which «have a decisive voice in the issue of loan allocation,» «cannot close their eyes to the situation.»
«The political circumstances being unchanged, the chances for Belarus to receive the IMF loan equal to zero,» he said, «Nasha Niva.»
The diplomat said that «there’re no specific talks with Minsk,» and «Minsk’s signals are unfounded and inconsistent.» According to him, the EU will continue its policy of ignoring unless the situation has changed.
He stresses that although the government are involved in the negotiations with IMF officials, everyone understands that they are not to take decisions. The diplomat doesn’t rule out a spiral development of Belarus crisis. «The Belarusian authorities seem doing nothing,» he said.