Alignment with the IMF: why Belarus is excluded from the ruble reserves

© RIA Novosti / Sergey Goneeverything in PhotoBank.Lukashenko at the meeting of the EurAsECAlignment with the IMF: why Belarus is excluded from the ruble reserves© RIA Novosti / Sergey Goneeverything the image Bank

MOSCOW, 14 Jul — RIA Novosti, Natalia Dembinski. The national Bank of Belarus will exclude the Russian ruble from the calculation of reserves. As reported in the press service of the Bank, since July 1, the country will calculate the international reserve assets only on the methodology of the International monetary Fund (IMF). It does not account for precious metals that are different from monetary gold, as well as a number of currencies including the Russian ruble. However, Minsk will continue to use it for payments on obligations of the country.

According to experts, although this change is largely technical, but there are both political and economic motives.

The Pro-Western course

According to 1 June 2017, the volume of international reserves of the National Bank of Belarus (NBB) was estimated at 5,239 billion dollars according to the standard IMF and 5,604 billion dollars to the national standard. Thus, the gap between gold and Forex reserves of national and international methodologies is 365 million dollars.

In her opinion, it could make the IMF, world Bank or European Bank for reconstruction and development, in cooperation with which calculates Belarus.

When developing countries to publish reserves solely on the methodology of the IMF, this may implicitly follow that they further look forward to working closely with the IMF and other global financial institutions, she said.

Belarusians, in her opinion, not that I don’t trust the ruble, but I want to show that Belarus — Western country. And so technical, in fact, the step fits into their current political agenda.

Note that now the IMF and Belarus continue to discuss the possibility of providing Minsk with credit. Previously it was that the international monetary Fund is ready to allocate 3.5 billion dollars at 2.28 per cent per annum for 10 years. Instead, the IMF requires from Minsk a series of reforms — refusal of increase of salaries, increase in utility tariffs and large-scale privatization of state property.

Inconvenience for business

That Minsk may be trying to demonstrate his independence from Moscow, according to Andrei Kochetkov, the analyst of «OTKRITIE Broker», noting that now it is a General trend among former Soviet republics.On the other hand, the Belarusian currency is still pegged to the dollar and the Euro, and therefore more focused on them than on the Russian ruble, the analyst said.

«Belarus itself a rejection of redundancy can bear any foreign exchange risks associated with exchange rate fluctuations. If the country has any obligation in any currency, it is good to have reserves in that currency,» — adds Dmitry Golubovsky, an expert on financial markets FG «Kalita-Finans».

The strengthening of the ruble ended
If we talk about the ruble, the decision of the Belarusian regulator looks timely, said Golubovska. In his view, the two-year trend of strengthening of the Russian currency is completed, and in the future, the ruble will weaken.© Fotolia / Valerie PotapovaМонета in a single ruble on the background graphicsAlignment with the IMF: why Belarus is excluded from the ruble reserves© Fotolia / Valerie PotapovaМонета in a single ruble on the background graphics

«The fact that the ruble is excessively strong, giving the government and to import it needs to devalue,» — says Golubovsky.

Apparently, Belarusians consider these statements of the Russian authorities and act in accordance with.

«To strengthen the Russian currency will not, and fall, it may very well, especially if you will go down the oil. Do not expect Belarusians and growth of Russia’s share in foreign trade turnover, but see the recovery in Europe, where causes inflation to rise and consumer demand revives,» he said.