In pursuing their economic policy, the authorities have taken advantage of the existence of excess industrial capacity and have relied on price and exchange controls in an attempt to contain inflation pressures. In spite of strong financial support, agriculture performed poorly during 1998, as a result of inclement weather conditions, lack of financial incentives to producers, and aging harvesting equipment. Industrial production expanded at an annual rate of 10 percent, and investment, at a rate of 51/2 percent.
This paper reviews economic developments in the Republic of Belarus during 1996–98. Since 1996, the Belarusian authorities have sought to revive economic activity and raise living standards through the rapid expansion of credit and policies aimed at accelerating export growth, particularly to Russia. These policies led to the acceleration of officially measured economic growth, from close to 3 percent in 1996 to 10½ percent in 1997 and 12 percent during the first quarter of 1998 (year over year).
This paper first discusses recent economic developments through the first half of 2000, and then, provides an assessment of vulnerabilities in the Belarusian banking system. Dollarization in Belarus is also discussed. In this paper, the current business environment and the existing obstacles to reach these objectives are described. Agriculture plays a key role in the Belarusian economy. Finally, the lack of progress in agricultural reform, especially with respect to land reform and the development of private sector farming, is described.
This paper describes economic developments in Belarus during 1992–94. The difficult economic situation facing Belarus in 1992 and 1993 continued unabated in 1994. Two political developments compounded the economic problems in the first half of the year. Efforts were aimed at alleviating or mitigating the effects of the downturn in output on living standards in the run-up to the country’s first presidential elections. In September 1994, the government developed a comprehensive macroeconomic and structural adjustment program, or “Anti-Crisis Program,” which was approved by the parliament in October.
This paper reviews economic developments in the Republic of Belarus during the 1990s. In late 1994 and early 1995, the Belarusian authorities took major steps to further liberalize the economy and bring down inflation from the high levels of 1993–94. By the second half of 1995, however, macroeconomic policies began to be relaxed and structural reform came to a virtual standstill. The relaxation of monetary policy was accompanied by an exchange rate policy in 1996, which caused the Belarusian currency to continue to appreciate significantly against the U.S. dollar.