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Leanid Zlotnikau: The government knows what to do with the economy, but will do nothing

17.08.2016  |  Economy   |  EuroBelarus Information Service,  
Leanid Zlotnikau: The government knows what to do with the economy, but will do nothing

Belarus is losing currency earnings – in the 6 months of 2016 the country earned 3 billion less than in the same period in 2015. Instead of removing the causes of the flop the state relies on magic.

The currency of the state's revenue, according to statistics of the National Bank, in January-June this year amounted to $13.7 billion. It is 18% or 2.96 billion dollars less than than in the first six months of last year.

The negative dynamics of exports has been continuing for the fourth year now - and experts don’t show optimism despite the plans to reduce the cost of Belarusian products and attract investment voiced by the officials.

- It’s clear what these losses are: the fall of exports at "Belaruskalij", at our oil refineries, motorcar industry, and other Belarusian industrial giants. The reasons of the losses are also clear – we have high production costs and low competitiveness, - noted economist Leanid Zlotnikau in the talk with the “EuroBelarus” Information Service. – It is clear that in order to raise competitiveness and reduce costs, we should invest a lot of money, substantially change the organization of the industry, as well as introduce and apply innovations... We have a lot of things to do that the Baltic States, Poles, Czechs and post-Soviet countries have already done. But it takes time to change to a completely different economy; and the authorities show no desire to change in this direction. Therefore, despite the fact that everyone, including the government, understands what to do – nothing is being done. It will only get worse.

Besides, according to Leanid Zlotnikau, the government mostly consists of supporters of socialist ideas, not reformers.

- For how long can you last, doing like this? It depends on many factors – both political and economic. But we see North Korea and Cuba, which have been conserved in this state for a long time. Well, Belarus has recently mentioned something about privatization of at least part of some small enterprises. It was decided to allocate a little money to support small businesses. In general, these steps are too small and don’t change the general picture. We still have a lot of people among the authorities who are still guided by the political economy of socialism, which now can give nothing for understanding of what is happening around.

As to the adaptation resources of Belarusians, which seems to be endless, Leanid Zlotnikau turned to the works of sociologist Pitirim Sorokin, the creator of social stratification and social mobility theory.

According to Sorokin, the reason for revolutions lies in the suppression of the basic needs of the majority of the population by the existing social system, in the inefficiency of the system itself, as well as in the weakness of the protection of public order. Sorokin argued that the only way to improve social life can only be the reforms carried out by legal and constitutional means.

- Our country has many more ways to influence the masses – both by force and propaganda. In general, in terms of economy, we shouldn’t expect anything better.

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