Crisis in Belarus to Continue for Another Year and a Half, Ministry of Finance

08.06.2011 09:21

The Ministry of Finance of Russia believe that Belarus won't be able to quickly overcome financial crisis. This was reported by Deputy Finance Minister Sergei Storchak on June 7. "They will be able to cope with monetary problems quite rapidly. It will take around 15-18 months," he said.

In responce to a question about EurAsEs credit to Belarus, Sergei Storchak said that the privatization of Belarusian enterprises is not the main condition of providing $3 billion, reports «Interfax.»

Sergei Storchak emphasised that there’re about 15 positions in the program. «Privatization is one element out of probably 15 items,» the deputy minister said, noting that he could not disclose the other conditions of the loan, as such actions hadn’t been agreed with the Belarusian side, RIA «Novosti» news agency.

Storchak is Sure for Crisis not to Last Long in Belarus

If to forecast the economic situation in Belarus in view of credit support, «it will turn out what we (Russia — ed.) had in 1998 — first deep plunge, and then a sharp rebound and a quick recovery, unless they can stand a single exchange rate and market-based economy elements,» said Sergei Storchak.

«Given the past quite good backlog in terms of productivity and social stability, I think that they can overcome some problems of monetary nature fairly quickly,» said Deputy Finance Minister of the Russian Federation.

Storchak Welcomes Belarus’s Request for IMF Loans

Last week, the Belarusian government asked the IMF to open a new program for the country. In this case, Minsk asks for $3.5-8 billion for a period of three to five years.

«Our program is designed for 36 months. Most likely, IMF stand-by will be scheduled for the same terms,» said Russian Deputy Finance Minister.

According to him, it will be interesting to see how the macroeconomic program for Belarus, being a condition for the EurAsEC Crisis Fund loan, will be consistent with the proposals and ideas, offered by the IMF.

«I think that these two programs’ synergy will be very good,» concluded Storchak.

Belarus is experiencing serious economic problems. The National Bank of the country devalued the national currency on May 23: the official dollar exchange rate rose immediately by 56% — up to Br4.930 from Br3.155, and the formal national currency fell against the dollar by 36%. Nevertheless, foreign currency fever is still quite sharp.