Eurobonds rates increased
The escalation between Belarus and the EU resulted in undesirable financial results. Belarusian Eurobonds quotes went down. The yield on five-year Eurobonds increased from 10.08% to 10.74% per annum (on 1st March), on 7-year bonds – from 10.29% to 10.61% per annum (on 1st March).
The yield on bonds is considered a benchmark for the placement of new bonds. In other words, if today Belarus decides to place bonds in the European bond market foreign investors will agree to provide funds at 10.7% per annum. For instance, a week ago, before the escalation of the diplomatic conflict, funds could be attracted at 10.1% per annum. When a country borrows hundreds of millions or even billions of dollars, even hundredths of a percent plays a big role.
Another important consequence is that due to the escalation a positive trend for Belarusian bonds has been interrupted, deteriorating chances to attract new funding.
The country's leadership has instructed the local authorities to raise minimum wages at enterprises by the end of 2019 to BYN 1,000, which would lead to an increase in the average wage in the economy as a whole to BYN 1 500. The pace of wage growth in 2017 is insufficient to ensure payroll at BYN 1000 by late 2017 without manipulating statistical indicators. In order to fulfil the president’s order, the government would have to increase budgetary expenditures on wages in healthcare and education, enterprises – to carry out further layoffs and expand the practice of taking loans to pay wages and restrict investment in modernisation of fixed assets. In 2010, the artificial increase in wages led to a threefold devaluation in 2011, an increase in the average salary to BYN 1500 will not match the capabilities of the economy and would lead to yet another devaluation.