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President’s aide: Belarus has already started hardest reforms
Belarus has already started the hardest reforms, Kiryl Rudy, top economic advisor to Belarus president said on Belarus 1 TV. The head of Main Economic Department at the Office of the President was interviewed by Voice of America's Russian Service in Washington when Rudy attended the annual meeting of the IMF and World Bank administration.
The Belarusian delegation negotiated with the World Bank and agreed to continue cooperation with the IMF. Two World Bank Vice Presidents are expected to visit Minsk soon, Rudy added.
The centralized economic planning used to be a mobilizing factor in Belarus at some point, the President’s aide said. It gave an impulse for development. However, this is not the only factor causing problems in our economy at the moment, the official noted. The situation in the raw material markets has changed and Belarus’ main trade partners (Russia and Ukraine) and having problems now. This is the reason for our problems, Rudy believes.
The Belarusian authorities have already launched the most unpopular reforms, Rudy noted. “The pension age is being increased, the utility payments have gone up and the prices were liberalized at the beginning of the year,” the official stated.