Proceeds from duties on petroleum products have little effect on international reserves
In January 2015, Belarus’ gold reserves totalled USD 4.724, USD 334.4 million less than in December 2014. In 2015, Belarus’ budget gained circa USD 100 mln from export duties on oil products produced from Russian oil. Proceeds from export duties on petroleum products only slow the shrinking pace of the international reserves. In order to reduce this pace further, the government is likely to tighten measures on consumer imports, to prolong restrictions on foreign currency purchases on the domestic market, and to enable new issues of foreign currency bonds with longer maturity period by Belarusian banks while increasing the interest rates on them. Privatisation should not be regarded as a source to replenish the international reserves; therefore, the only remaining option is loans from Belarus’ allies – Russia and China.
According to Belstat, in August 7,600 people were dismissed, including 4,800 civil servants. Dismissals of civil servants were due to the optimisation in the public administration by up to 30%. Some civil servants would retain their job however would lose the status of a civil servant. Vacancies on the labour market are likely to reduce in number, thanks to the optimisation, the state administration would increase wages for public servants. The payroll fund for retained employees is likely to increase and some former state employees are likely to get jobs in affiliated organizations. The optimisation of the state apparatus should complete by January 1st, 2018, and some former civil servants are likely to join the ranks of the unemployed.