E-bulletin of IISEPS Center for Documentation, N 12, 2011 – ISSN 1822-5578 (only Russian)


1. Basic trends of December
2. Chronicle of key events
3. Politics

3.1. A forgotten directive
3.2. Mind the populism!3.3. The Kremlin “merry-go-round” and its consequences
4. Economics
4.1. The moved aside problem
4.2. Alarming state of the sixth economy of the world
4.3. Devaluation is a blessing, however temporary
5. Finances
5.1. 70 is the share of each one of us, 4 billion – of everyone
6. Our forecast for January
7. From the IISEPS desktop


Dear readers!

Life is more complex than any of our conceptions about it; that is why any projections built on the basis of extrapolation of the current events to the future fall flat quite often. It is the same as with the weather forecast. The probability to see tomorrow out of the window exactly the same thing one can see today is no lower than 85% which enables even the dilettanti not possessing professional knowledge to foretell the weather for the next few days with a high degree of probability. The government represented by prime minister M. Myasnikovich promised “to suppress all this (the rise in prices) by December”. As for December, we expressed our doubts about it. November with its 8.1% headline inflation did not allow us to display any optimism. However, head of the government turned out to be right. As of the time of the “Infofocus” preparation there were no final data yet, but apparently the government was going to keep within 2.5%.
The government, the National bank and the upper tier of the “vertical” power structure (Presidential Administration), contrary to the opinion established in the midst of independent analysts, are educable. It does not mean, of course, that they are able to begin to study textbooks on economics. We do not at all cherish such illusions. However, representatives of the political elite are undoubtedly able to solve the problems of their own survival. Otherwise they would not have been able to hold out even for a year! Having let the ruble float freely, having reduced money emission and having solved the question on another portion of economic preferences with Russia, A. Lukashenko and Co. secured economic, as well as social, stabilization by the end of the year. The IISEPS December opinion poll registered a change in the public opinion trend despite our projection. From the quantitative point of view, the matter concerns a rather slight growth in the positive attitude so far; nevertheless the downhill sliding has stopped. The change in the trend had an effect on the attitude to the authorities. Since the historic September minimum the head of state ratings (electoral, as well as the trust rating) have grown by several percentage points.
As for the problem of the adverse balance of foreign trade, the Belarusian government, just as we have supposed, will not be able to finally solve it relying mainly on devaluation of the national currency. At least they do not manage to lay the proper groundwork for it for the next year. In November the balance of foreign trade in commodities made up -$ 373 million (-$ 375.4 million in October).
On November 30 D. Konovalov and V. Kovaliov accused of organizing an act of terror in Minsk underground were sentenced to the extreme penalty – execution. In December 43.4% of Belarusians said they did not believe they were guilty. A. Lukashenko has to take into consideration such level of public distrust. That is why the decision about granting a pardon (at least to V. Kovaliov) was not made before the end of the year.

IISEPS executive board

Download full version (in Russian only)