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03 December 2021, 15:39

Belarus PM compares predictions from ‘independent' economists to weather forecasts

MINSK, 3 December (BelTA) – This year the Belarusian economy has demonstrated results that exceed the government's optimistic scenarios, BelTA learned from Prime Minister of Belarus Roman Golovchenko on 3 December.

Roman Golovchenko said: “We have less than one month till the end of the year. We already see how it ends. And we see that in most indicators we will exceed the goals we set ourselves. Despite all the apocalyptic forecasts that have been pouring from so-called independent economists. If I were the one that pays these economists, I'd stop paying them because the Belarusian weather service used to give better forecasts than they give economic forecasts.”

The prime minister remarked that the government initially expected 2021 to be a difficult year. “And the fact that we are doing better than the optimistic scenario specified gives a certain reason for pride. Pride not in ourselves but in the people that live and work in this country. Everyone makes his or her own contribution to it by doing their jobs. Because the achieved results are truly very serious considering the current situation,” Roman Golovchenko said.

Roman Golovchenko
Roman Golovchenko

Roman Golovchenko stated that all the indicators that describe the economy's health demonstrate growth, including population revenues, the GDP, export volume, export surplus, the country's balance of payments. Only inflation grew ahead of the projections but this growth has stabilized and the government intends to achieve a much lower figure next year.

The prime minister attributed high export figures to Belarusian companies being able to find their bearings fast in the current market situation. “Our enterprises are the ones to praise for this wonder,” he said. Trust in the banking system is on the rise, too. For a number of months the population has been selling more foreign currency than buying. Ruble deposits and foreign currency deposits are on the rise as well.

Roman Golovchenko stated: “Certainly, there are shortcomings we've also reported today. We could not achieve intended figures in agriculture and civil engineering.”

Objective reasons, including bad weather, are to blame for poor performance of Belarusian agriculture. “The grain harvest is below the projections. Nevertheless, agriculture is catching up in animal husbandry products, dairy products in order to gain as much as possible and demonstrate rather good results at the end of the year,” the prime minister stated.

According to Roman Golovchenko, the situation in the civil engineering industry was affected by poor access to bank loans for realizing construction projects, particularly in H1 2021. “We keep an eye on the situation. We know what to do,” Roman Golovchenko said. Yet he pointed out that this year's housing construction target will be hit: 4 million m2 of housing will be commissioned, including 1 million m2 of housing built with state support.

“But we wanted the civil engineering industry to achieve much more ambitious goals. Unfortunately, it couldn't do that. But we are going to fix things,” he added.

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