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BULLETINS INFOFOCUS № 4

E-bulletin of IISEPS Center for Documentation, N 4, 2010 – ISSN 1822-5578 (only Russian)

Content:

Introduction
1. Basic trends of April
2. Chronicle of key events
3. Politics

3.1. Sport is above politics, and what about sportsmen?
3.2. Cargo “500”
3.3. Who does not let Belarusians go into the present?
4. Economics
4.1. Fell, but did not do push-ups
4.2. Recession was ordered “to depart this life”
4.3. Money underneath
5. Finances
5.1. The credit “soap bubble”
6. Good news
7. Our forecast for May
8. From the IISEPS desktop

Introduction:

Dear readers!

 

In the “Message-2010” to the National Assembly and the Belarusian people which president A. Lukashenko appeared with on April, 20 preparation of Directive N 4 “About further liberalization directed at emancipation of the economic activity conditions” was first mentioned. Soon a draft of the directive appeared on the Internet. There is no doubt that the final version may undergo considerable changes, however, even if the level of economic liberalism is reduced two times, the document can be safely considered revolutionary. It is difficult to estimate today all the consequences of its implementation, not only the economic ones. Appearance of a draft of such a document testifies at least to the following: there are people in the government and in the Presidential Administration who are not only able to rationally assess the condition of the Belarusian economy, but also to suggest clever decisions. It is clear that there are also liberal reforms’ opponents in the above mentioned agencies, otherwise where have the anti-market documents appeared from for so many years?
Directive N 4, regardless of its final look, is to become the “faith symbol” around which the struggle inside the power-holding elite for future Belarus is going to start. This is exactly the supposition we expressed in the March forecast.
The announced in the “Message-2010” policy of economic liberalization was successfully combined with the dress rehearsal of the forthcoming presidential elections. The elections were held according to the traditional scenario in spite of 130 amendments into the Electoral Code. It was not difficult to foretell such an outcome. The authorities have not yet entered the river of economic liberalization; they are only timidly trying the water; however there is no other option, but to plunge into it. And it is impossible to hold the economic liberalization process, once it has been started, within the initial limits provided that no source of gratuitous resources appears-just as it happened in the USSR in the 70s of the previous century, when the rise in prices for oil blocked Kosygin’s reforms. However, a similar problem does not threaten Belarus, to all appearances.
As for the relations with the West, our forecast concerning their aggravation has fully justified itself. The elections played an important role here; however the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) had anyway enough reasons at the conference in Strasbourg for suspending high-level contacts with Belarus.

IISEPS executive board

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