Belarus requires up to USD 500 million to finance Social Security Fund deficit
According to the Finance Ministry, the deficit in the social security fund in January-April 2017 totalled BYN 301 million or USD 158 million. The Social Security Fund has had deficit since 2015 and in order to solve the problem, the authorities decided to raise the retirement age. Due to a decrease in the number of employed in the economy amid a growth in pensioners, deficit in the Social Security Fund is likely to retain. Thanks to low inflation the authorities would not raise pensions and social benefits and may introduce some operational and functional cuts in the Fund’s budget. In 2016, the state allocated USD 750 million to finance the Social Security Fund budget deficit. In 2017, the Fund’s deficit is likely to reduce to USD 500 million, which would be funded from the state budget at the expense of other expenditure items.
During searches of social and "green" activists and anarchists, law enforcement has seized computers, mobile phones and publications. The authorities have also exerted additional pressure on supporters of unauthorized street protests and independent lawyers, who represented defendants in the White Legion case. The security services have stepped up the persecution of opponents before the street protests announced by the opposition. Apparently, the Belarusian authorities aspire that participants in street protests would reduce in number and that the low interest of the population to socio-political agenda before the local election campaign would retain.