News

On the 12th of September 2012 Minister Andrei Belousov spoke during the “government hour” at the State Duma of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation

12.09.12

Press review from news agencies

following the speech of Minister Andrei Belousov during the “government hour” at the State Duma,

Moscow, from September 12, 2012

 

The Economy Ministry of Russia believes that a full-scale global crisis is unlikely

MOSCOW, September 12. /Corr. of ITAR-TASS Aleksey Tsypin/. The Economy Ministry of Russia believes that a full-scale global crisis is unlikely. This was announced by the head of the agency Andrei Belousov during the “government hour” in the State Duma.

“A long period of time will be required for recovery, but we believe that Europe will avoid a full-scale recession”, the Minister said. “As a result, global economic growth, as predicted, will slow to 3%-3.5% per year in 2012-2013, but it will reach 4% by 2015”, he considers. “The probability of a full-scale crises, we believe, is pretty low”, noted Belousov.

 

Head of MED RF believes that the Eurozone will need a long period for recovery after stagnation

MOSCOW, September 12 - RIA Novosti. The Eurozone will be in stagnation and will need a long period for recovery – such opinion was expressed by the head of the Economy Ministry of Russia Andrei Belousov during a presentation at the State Duma’s “government hour” on Wednesday.

Thereat the Minister said, that Europe will be able to avoid a full-scale recession. The Minister noted that at present “given an active policy on the part of the European Central Bank and international institutions” the crisis could be localized in several problematic European countries.

According to the Minister, the current slow-down in growth in Europe is to a large extent caused by budget consolidation and cutbacks in budget expenses.

Thereat, according to the estimates of the Economy Ministry of Russia, global economic growth will slow to 3%-3.5% per year in 2012-2013, but it may reach 4% by 2015.

 

The Economy Ministry of Russia expects that the GDP growth will slow to less than 3% in the second half of this year

Moscow. September 12. INTERFAX - Russian GDP growth will slow to less than 3% in the second half of this year, compared to 4.5% in the first half, Russian Economic Development Minister Andrei Belousov said during the “government hour” on Wednesday at the State Duma.

“In the second half of the year, the GDP growth will come to a little less than 3%, after 4.5% in the first half of the year. For 2012 as a whole, the Economy Ministry of Russia expects 3.5% GDP growth,” he said.

Belousov mentioned that from the middle of 2011 all the way until the end of the first quarter of 2012, “quite a strong wave of economic recovery was observed – GDP growth in annual terms was roughly 5%”. “This growth is related, firstly, to weakening of the Russian rouble in the second half of the last year and with slowdown of the competitive imports, and, secondly, to the growth acceleration of investments into the fixed capital, which rates have reached double-digits, and, thirdly, to the expansion of consumption which for the most part was based on the consumer credits growth”, he explained.

In the second quarter of 2012, the economic growth, according to the Minister, slowed down dramatically, dynamics of gross national product outlined on a monthly basis decreased approximately 4 times – from 1.4% per month (with exception of seasonal fluctuations – IF) down to 0.3%. “The cause of stagnation is the slowdown as well as reduction of fuel and energy resources export which is, in many respects, associated with demand reduction in Europe”, the Head of the Economy Ministry of Russia explained.

“Another factor is the slowdown of consumer crediting growth from more than 40% in the first half of the year to approximately 30% by the end of the year. It can cause decrease in goods turnover growth rates from 7.1% in the first half of the year to 5% in the second half of the year”, said the Minister.

Increase of labour productivity will be a key objective for the next three years – Belousov

MOSCOW, September 12. /ITAR-TASS/. “Increase of labour productivity will be a key strategic objective for the next three-year period”, Andrei Belousov, Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation, said today at the session of the State Duma.

According to him, in terms of gross national product per capita, now Russia has reached the level of USD 21 thousand based on purchasing power parity. “It is above the level of the Eastern European countries and is getting close to the level of the Southern European countries”, said the Minister. “And as for the labour productivity, today we are approximately at the level of Chile and Mexico and we are behind the developed countries approximately 2.5–3 times. Such situation is almost impossible, and either we dramatically narrow this gap or we will not be able to maintain even today's consumption level".

Belousov believes that without labour productivity growth of 4–5 percent per year with the subsequent increase to at least 6 percent we will not be able to achieve any of the strategic objectives neither in the social sphere nor in the sphere of state security and defence capabilities. According to the baseline forecast scenario, as he puts it, labour productivity growth will make by about 17 percent, i.e. by hardly 4 percent per year. And according to the plans of programs of innovative development of the companies in partnership with the state authorities for this period, labour productivity growth will make almost 30 percent, i.e. about 7 percents per year.

"That is we see that we have all the opportunities for achieving this objective in case of implementation of the correct policy of consolidated efforts”, continued the Head of the Economy Ministry of Russia. “Calculations show that if we intensify all available factors of economic growth it is possible to achieve the target parameter set by the President, i.e. 1.5-fold labour productivity growth by 2018". According to Belousov, for this purpose, in particular, the accelerated growth of investments, technologies development and maintenance of financial balance are required.

 

MED RF expects that in 2012 Russia will harvest approximately 73-75 million tons of grain

RBC. September 12, 2012, Moscow. The Ministry of Economic Development of the Russian Federation expects that in 2012 Russia will harvest approximately 73-75 million tons of grain. This was announced by the head of the agency Andrei Belousov during the “government hour” in the State Duma. “We anticipate that at best the grain harvest will total 73–75 million tons,” said the Minister.

Russia will harvest no more than 75 million tons of grain in the current agricultural year, Economic Development Minister Andrei Belousov said in the State Duma on Wednesday.

“We anticipate that at best the grain harvest will total 73–75 million tons,” Belousov said, adding that drought conditions in a number of regions are weighing on the current crop.

According to him, the drought in the southern regions of Russia has caused the rise of the foodstuff prices. For example, during June–July of 2012, the prices for fruit and vegetables increased by 17%. The prices for grain have grown not only in Russia but in the world markets elsewhere. “We anticipate that the growth of consumer prices in 2012 will amount to 7%,” said the Minister.

Looking back, in late August 2012, the Ministry of Agriculture of the Russian Federation corrected the grain harvest volume for 2012–2013 to set it at the level of 70–75 million tons. Earlier, Nikolay Fedorov, Minister of Agriculture of the Russian Federation, said that the pessimistic forecast of the grain yield in 2012 makes 75 million tons.

According the upbeat forecast of the Ministry, it is planned to harvest 42 million tons of wheat, and the pessimistic forecast says it will be 40 million tons. This being said, N. Fedorov specified that “he is absolutely sure that the domestic grain needs of Russia will be covered 100%”. According to him, the grain export potential of the current agricultural year amounts to 10–14 million tons. At the same time, N. Fedorov mentioned that the Ministry of Agriculture is ready to carrying out point commodity interventions in the grain market; all the documents related to this question are already prepared.

The day before, the Ministry of Agriculture informed that in Russia, as of September 10, 2012, 58.5 million tons of grain was gathered which is 18.2% less than last year. As of the same date in 2011, the total yield amounted to 71.5 million tons, in 2010 – to 48 million tons.

 

In 2013 subsidies for commuter rail traffic will remain at the level of 25 billion roubles - MED

MOSCOW, September 12 - RIA Novosti. Subsidizing of so-called “zero” infrastructural tariff for companies providing commuter rail traffic services for passengers (PPK) for the use of the RR infrastructure provided for in the budget for 2013 will remain at the level of two previous years – 25 billion roubles, the head of the Economy Ministry of Russia Andrei Belousov said during the “government hour” in the State Duma.

From 2011 commuter rail traffic services for passengers have been provided by PPKs which offers the tariffs for regions. Authorities of regions of the federation in their turn set the final tariff for passenger transportation, in most cases the tariffs are lower than the economically sound level, and the carrier shall be reimbursed for the remaining part. Besides, from 2011 RR introduced the so-called “zero tariff” for PPKs as the payment for rail facilities, and the state allocate a subsidy to the monopolist in the amount of 25 billion roubles. For the first time such variant was used in 2011 and they stick to it in the current year.

“In 2013 subsidies for commuter rail traffic will remain at the level of 25 billion roubles”, said Belousov.

At the same time, according to his words, it is necessary to engage regions to co-financing of commuter rail traffic.

“We should take all efforts not to cut the number of commuter trains”, emphasized the Minister.

Earlier the Economy Ministry of Russia suggested that the subventions for commuter rail traffic for regions of the federation were reduced by 50% every year. The Ministry’s stand was that the railway transportation belongs to the competence of regions of the Russian Federation, and they have their own income from taxes, that is why the corresponding expenses should be born by the regions as well.

 

There are no grounds for introduction of utilization fees for agricultural equipment - the Economy Ministry of Russia

Moscow. September 12. INTERFAX - The Economy Ministry of Russia does not see the grounds to support the legislative initiative to introduce utilization fees for agricultural equipment, as reported in the agency’s materials prepared for the “government hour” on Wednesday in the State Duma.

“According to the information of the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation, the approach to utilization of agricultural equipment similar to the approach to the utilization of passenger cars is unacceptable due to specifics  of the park of agricultural equipment, its registration in the territory of the RF, and technical problems related to utilization”, - the materials report.

Agricultural equipment are not registered with GIBDD (State Inspectorate For Traffic Security) authorities, and organizations - agricultural producers are entitled to utilize equipment on their own; thereat they may dismantle a number of parts and reuse them; big size of agricultural equipment makes it difficult to deliver the out-of-order equipment to the utilization point without using the means of transport, the Economy Ministry of Russia explains.

“According to the Economy Ministry of Russia, there are no grounds to support the said legislative initiative", the materials report.

Besides, According to the information of the Ministry, the market of agricultural equipment is characterized by the significant share of state participation in co-financing of purchases, in this respect at the moment a mechanism of preferential sale of domestic agricultural equipment to agricultural producers is being developed.

From September 1 the Russian Federation introduced the utilization fees for automobile, load-carrying vehicles, including autocranes, mixer trucks and other vehicles designed for special purposes.

 

Privatization of energy companies should not be harmful neither for the companies, nor for the national interests of the country - Belousov

MOSCOW, September 12. /ITAR-TASS/. Privatization of holdings of shares in energy companies shall be conducted in such a way that it does not make any harm to the companies or to the national interests of the country. Today this was announced by the Economic Development Minister Andrei Belousov at the plenary session in the State Duma when he was answering the deputies questions.

At the “government hour” one of the deputies - Nikolai Ivanov /KPRF - Communist Party of the Russian Federation/ drew the Minister’s attention to the discussion of an issue related to adding to the authorized capital of OJSC Rosneftegaz of holdings of shares in companies engaged in power industry. “But adding of state-owned holdings of shares to the authorized capital of a third party entity legally means their privatization and transfer of ownership to OJSC Rosneftegaz”, believes the parliamentarian. In this context he was interested in what can guarantee that the state will keep the ownership in Rosneftegaz holding company on a continuing basis and if it is expedient that the decision on disposal of large state-owned holdings of shares is taken by the federal law.

“I have already mentioned that the decisions on privatization of large holdings of shares in energy companies, including those which are entered into the list of strategic enterprises, the procedure itself, the privatization mechanism today are currently undergoing significant changes, answered the Minister. And, first of all, the changes are related to transparency, to guarantee the public discussion of the process. As for the take-over of these companies by Rosneftegaz – we do have such opinion, but at the moment this is only one of approaches. This topic is being discussed at the government level, at other sits, and the final decision is not taken yet. There is a principal decision that the holdings of shares in well-known energy companies have to be privatized. Of course, this is true, but this should not harm the companies or the national interests and during this process the state should not lose its control over the corresponding assets in power industry”.

 

Documents