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EDB opens talks on Belarus stabilization program

MINSK, 24 January (BelTA) – A team of experts from the Eurasian Development Bank (EDB) and the EurAsEC Anticrisis Fund has launched negotiations with the Republic of Belarus to specify the financial aid within the stabilization program, BelTA learnt from the EDB press service.

The stabilization program of the Belarusian government centers on the EurAsEC Anticrisis Fund loan of $3 billion. Drastic changes in the social and economic conditions in the country last year required the adjustment of the document.

According to the EDB taskforce, in late 2011 Belarus managed to slow down inflation growth mainly due to a tightened control over prices, measures to stabilize the currency market and a toughened monetary policy.

However, the experts pointed to the negative forecasts for the world economy in 2012 and the expected decline in demand in foreign markets. Under these circumstances, the EDB taskforce believes that all efforts by the Belarusian authorities should be aimed at increasing economic resilience to external shocks and at further reducing structural imbalances.

The EDB experts held meetings in the National Bank, Finance Ministry and the Economy Ministry of Belarus. The parties agreed on the main adjustments to be made to the stabilization program of the Government, and discussed the preliminary information regarding the implementation of the conditions for the third tranche of the Anticrisis Fund loan.

“Discussions will continue over the coming weeks so that the Belarusian party could update the letter of intent to be approved at the next meeting of the Council of the EurAsEC Anticrisis Fund,” said the Bank.

The EurAsEC Anticrisis Fund (ACF) in the amount of $8.513 billion was established by the Governments of Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan on 9 June 2009. The ACF is to assist the participating countries in cushioning the impact the global financial crisis, to ensure economic and financial stability and promote integration in the region.