Belarus Economic Outlook
July 7, 2020The panorama darkened further in the second quarter, after the economy shrank for the first time in over three years in the first quarter. Activity contracted at a sharper pace, on average, in April-May than in Q1. Moreover, industrial production plunged in April–May, largely reflecting constraining effects of the health crisis, while retail sales growth dropped to a near three-year low in May as households put off spending amid lingering uncertainty. Externally, the picture was similarly grim: Merchandise exports nosedived by nearly a third in April—the worst result in over five years—due to eviscerated foreign demand and global supply chain disruptions. Meanwhile, in politics, authorities have detained Viktor Babaryko, President Lukashenko’s main rival in the 9 August’s presidential election, as part of a broader crackdown on the opposition. The sitting president is expected to win his sixth term in office.
Belarus Economic GrowthThe economy will likely shrink this year, owing to Covid-19. The external sector is set to be particularly hard hit due to vanishing foreign demand. Moreover, investment activity is seen contracting amid deteriorating sentiment, while shrinking remittances and delayed spending will dent consumer demand. The decision to avoid social distancing measures could soften the blow, however. FocusEconomics panelists project the economy to shrink 3.6% in 2020, which is up 0.2 percentage points from last month’s estimate. In 2021, the economy is expected to rebound and grow 2.9%.
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|Exchange Rate||2.10||-0.36 %||Dec 31|
|Stock Market||0.1||0.0 %||Jan 07|
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Belarus Economic News
July 17, 2020
A preliminary estimate revealed the economy shrank 1.7% in the first half of the year.
July 16, 2020
Industrial output rose 0.9% year-on-year in June (May: -4.3% yoy).
June 22, 2020
At an emergency meeting on 22 June, the National Bank of the Republic of Belarus (NBRB) trimmed the refinancing rate by 25 basis points to an all-time low of 7.75%, effective on 1 July.
June 17, 2020
Industrial production declined 4.3% year-on-year in May (April: -7.1% yoy).
June 11, 2020
Consumer prices dipped 0.1% in May over the last month, contrasting April’s 0.6% increase.