Society members: former chairman of the National Bank of Belarus Stanislav Bogdanovich and expert Belarusian Economic Research and Education Center Dmitry Kruk.
Why are the authorities so long delayed the devaluation?
Valery Karbalevich"So what everyone said what waited and worried that de facto already happened long ago has finally become a reality and de jure. From May 24, the National Bank has announced the devaluation of the exchange rate of the Belarusian ruble by 55%. Why are the authorities so long resisted the obvious? Some experts say that in March it was possible to do
Stanislav Bogdanovich"The authorities reportedly froze in prostration, did not do any action, even though the economy require rapid intervention. This is due to the fact that we all depend on one person. Everyone expected that everything will resolve itself. This is criminal negligence that led to a collapse of the exchange rate. After the devaluation of the same should be considered at the level of December 31, 2010. So with respect to that date amounted to 71.6% devaluation. "
Dmitry Kruk"I agree that there is a political factor. But there were also economic justification for delaying solutions devaluation. After the National Bank took the decision in April that at the Belarusian Currency and Stock Exchange will sell the currency only "priority claims" and that the National Bank is no longer going to make up the difference between demand and supply in the foreign exchange market, the exchange rate has lost its role of a nominal anchor for the economy.
Devaluation of the official authorities held back the following circumstances. First of all, the authorities sought to buy energy at low official rate to slow inflation. Secondly, the authorities feared that the example of the devaluation of 2009, the population will go to the bank to change rubles into foreign currency.
Therefore, the decision of the official devaluation, unsupported by the duty of the National Bank for the difference between supply and demand at the expense of its resources means that the role of the official exchange rate was not resumed until the level as in previous years. "
Socio-economic impact of the devaluation
Karbalevich"What will be the socio-economic impact of the devaluation? The drop in real wages? The rise in prices? Here's gasoline has risen by 20%. What else? . "
Bahdankevich"I do not understand why the authorities did not make steps to improve the health of the economy, and limited to the devaluation. Exchange rate — it is only the technical component of the economy.
For example, in the first quarter productivity increased by 10%, and real wages — by 25.2%. It is a violation of economic laws.
Another example. Exports rose in the first quarter by 42%, imports — by 62%. And there is nothing to change this imbalance. And these processes and lead to a devaluation. As a result, in the near future, real wages fall by
Crook: "The authorities are hoping that the new equilibrium exchange rate will be to stabilize the market, reduce the excessive and speculative demand, slow inflation. But there is a danger that these hopes have not come true, and we fall into the trap. After a half-hearted decision. National Bank is not going to make up the difference between supply and demand in the market and reinforce the non-cash cash market at the expense of their resources. As a result the rate of "black market" non-cash dollar market becomes more significant benchmark for the economy than the official rate.
The devaluation will lead to higher prices for those commodities, currencies which are still bought at the official rate. This is primarily gas. Can be realized in the worst case scenario, if you do not get the positive effects of the devaluation and the only negative. What this means is we've seen the last two months. "
Whether the country will return to a single exchange rate of the ruble?
Karbalevich"Does the announcement of the devaluation, which lost mnozhnasts courses and the country is returning to a single exchange rate of the Belarusian ruble? Will there be a currency in exchange? . "
Bahdankevich"The exchange rate should be determined by market supply and demand, and not administratively. When there is no currency in exchange, then, the ruble is expected to decline until the balance.
Then there is no need to spend to support the exchange rate of the National Bank's gold reserves. Provisions are intended to neutralize any speculative spikes in the market.
Statistics show that currency sales for January-April increased by 61%, which is almost $ 13 billion. And the reason there is no currency. Either these figures invalid or abnormal policy.
Here's authorities announce: get foreign loans and enroll these resources in reserve. This is wrong. Provisions should be formed not by borrowing, and by exports, the sale of state property.
Non-professional solutions continue. Do not announced a program of recovery. I do not see prospects for rapid stabilization of this new course. It is necessary that the National Bank and commercial banks provided cash currency exchange offices. "
Crook"The transition to a floating exchange rate would be a step forward. The benefits that we have had the last few years from a fixed exchange rate, have been exhausted. But the authorities have chosen this option of a fixed rate.
To fix mnozhnasts course, there are two ways. The first way — remove all restrictions kursavtvarennya in all segments of the market. And we would have quickly reached an equilibrium exchange rate.
The second approach employed by the National Bank — a fixed exchange rate. But in this version of the National Bank must maintain tight monetary policy, at the expense of its reserves to smooth out imbalances emerging in the market. But just this last National Bank is not going to do. His half-hearted decision. As a result, there is a great risk that the exchange rate will remain mnozhnasts. After all, remains speculative and speculative demand. "