Belarus: GDP rebounds in 2021
According to a preliminary reading, GDP rose 2.3% over the previous year in 2021, rebounding from the 0.9% contraction registered in 2020.
Although a full breakdown is not yet available, annual data shows that industrial activity was buoyant, namely mining, manufacturing and electricity production. In addition, subsectors such as information and communication, wholesale and retail trade, and transportation also performed well. Less positively, both agricultural production and construction activity declined considerably.
Going into early 2022, a robust export sector should remain largely unaffected by sanctions, as shown by ballooning exports to the EU—which nearly doubled in 2021. That said, the moving of Russian troops to Belarus in mid-January for a military exercise and the risk of conflict with Ukraine pose a serious threat to activity in the region, and reflect an environment that is hostile to investment.