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20 November 2023, 12:26

Manufacturing sector remains key driver of growth in Belarus in January-October

MINSK, 20 November (BelTA) - Real incomes of households rose on the back of the economic growth, Belarus' Deputy Economy Minister Andrei Kartun said as he commented on the main macroeconomic indicators in January-October 2023, BelTA learned from the press service of the Economy Ministry.

As the National Statistical Committee noted earlier, Belarus' GDP rose up by 3.8% in January-October. Thus, the 2023 target was met ahead of schedule.

According to Andrei Kartun, the manufacturing sector remains the key driver of growth: it contributed more than 60% to GDP growth. "The main contributors in October were mechanical engineering, the production of household appliances and cars, and light industry. Growth was also posted by retail (7.6%) and wholesale trade (13.2%). Construction showed a good dynamics of 8.8%. Agriculture secured a foothold in the positive territory with 1.2%. the milk, meat and poultry posted high growth rates. A recovery trend has remained in place in the IT industry for the fourth month in a row. It is important that the manufactured products sell immediately. The stocks continue to decrease: by almost Br1 billion over the past six months," Andrei Kartun said.

This trend is thanks to the momentum in foreign markets, Andrei Kartun explained. "Physical volumes of merchandise exports in January-September increased by more than a quarter. The total value of shipments is the highest in the last 11 years.

In September, exports of goods and services reached $4.2 billion, and the total surplus reached a record $370 million this year. Maintaining a high level of competitiveness of domestic products in the long-term is facilitated by rising investment in fixed assets (+ 13.3%). Expenses on new machines and equipment surged by almost a third. The economic growth ensured a high level of salaries – Br,1940 in September. On 1 September 2023, labor pensions were increased by 5%. The growth of real household incomes is facilitated by the low level of the consumer price index: 3.7% in annual terms. According to our estimates, by the end of the year, the inflation will be about 5.5%," Andrei Kartun concluded.

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