24 December 2014
On 11 December, the Belarusian parliament took only 50 minutes to adopt its 2015 budget.
The rapid adoption of the budget highlights the parliament's puppet status - it could not even be troubled to hold even demonstrative discussions over the important document.
Although more than 80% of Belarusians believe that budget information should be easily accessible, even experts...
17 December 2014
Since 2014 the pattern of illegal exports from Belarus to EU has moved towards larger consignments. Large quantities of detained tobacco found on cargo trains. On 6 November Jury Siańko became the Head of the State Customs Committee. Will he change the current situation with smuggling from Belarus to...
09 December 2014
With the economy dominated by the state and its illiberal trade laws, many Belarusians are increasingly taking to shopping abroad.
In the the middle of November, Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group reported that customers from Belarus ranked fifth in the number of purchases, leaving behind the US and Canada in the online sales on Chinese anti-Valentine's Day holiday known as...
03 December 2014
Belarus displayed modest but stable growth during past couple of months.
However, future prospects for growth remain uncertain, given the deteriorating economic situation in Russia along with the desire of the authorities to carry out several growth stimulating policies.
Moreover, there are questions with respect to both the exchange rate and interest rate policy that the...
12 November 2014
Belarus and Ukraine are currently studying the economic feasibility of reviving the E40 waterway which goes along the Vistula and Dnieper rivers. It will connect the Baltic and Black Seas and make inland shipping cheaper and more environmentally friendly.
On 10 October the trilateral commission presented their project on the route's restoration at the international exhibition "...
03 November 2014
Belarus ranks 53rd out of 187 countries in the 2014 Human Development Index (HDI). That places it ahead of fellow post-Soviet states Russia (57th), Kazakhstan (70th), and Ukraine (83rd).
To measure development, HDI underscores the importance of “people and their capabilities” rather than economic metrics. It combines three dimensions of development: population health, access...
29 October 2014
On 20 October the government announced a plan to introduce punishment for sponging ('tuneyadstvo’). It was practiced in Soviet times and it may return to Belarus again. About 10% of population able to work do not pay taxes although the official unemployment rate is only 0,5%.
Belarus has one of the largest shadow economies in the region. Over the last years the Belarusian...
24 October 2014
The main economic events for October in Belarus revolve around Russia: the ratification of the Eurasian Economic Union, the continued fighting over the re-export of banned European foodstuffs to Russia, and, finally, an argument over Russia’s oil tax manoeuvre.
Russia’s actions, both political and economic, further complicate the situation with the Belarusian economy, which...
26 September 2014
On 19 September Russian Agricultural Control announced that Russia can restrict the imports of fish and dairy from a number of Belarusian companies. These companies allegedly violate the sanctions regime by re-exporting EU products under fake labels.
Since the very imposition of sanctions, Russia has constantly charged Belarus with cheating. Belarusian officials have denied the...
25 September 2014
Price increases for regulated goods and services, as well as the abolition of price regulations on meat had a stimulating effect on inflation in Belarus.
In the first half of 2014 a gradual reduction of Belarus' foreign currency reserves occurred as a result of significant foreign debt service payments. But over the summer this year external and internal borrowing and foreign...
08 September 2014
On Sunday, Foreign Minister Uladzimir Makei headed to South Africa and Nigeria for a round of meetings.
After losing its partners in the Middle East and at the time when relations with Latin America are stagnating, Belarus is seeking new trade partners.
This year, Minsk opened four embassies – in Ecuador, Mongolia, Australia and Pakistan. Another one - in Qatar - is...
02 September 2014
High-tech outsourcing is one of the most dominant trends in today’s economy, but few would associate it with Belarus, better known for its heavy machinery exports than IT experts. This appears to finally be changing. RnR Market Research projects Belarus’ IT outsourcing market to grow at an annual rate of 17.8% by 2018.
Its proximity to the EU, the availability of skilled...