NATIONAL BANK OF THE REPUBLIC OF BELARUS

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23/08/2017

PRESS RELEASE

On September 13 the refinance rate will amount to 11.5% per annum

The Board of the National Bank of the Republic of Belarus made a decision to reduce the refinance rate on September 13, 2017 from 12% to 11.5% per annum and the interest rates on standing and bilateral transactions designed to maintain banks’ liquidity – from 14% to 13% per annum.

The actual inflation continues to decrease. In August 2017, the increase in consumer prices in annual terms is estimated at the level just below 6%, the core inflation – about 5% percent in annual terms.

The growth rates of consumer prices have been maintained within a narrow range (6.0-6.5%) during a long period of time, which reflects the stability of processes of slowing down the inflation and a sufficiently high probability of its preservation at the above-mentioned level in the coming months.

At the same time, significant risks for the acceleration of price growth on the part of monetary factors, as well as the balance of payments and the foreign exchange market are not observed in the medium term.

The growth rates of money supply remain moderate (the average broad money supply growth in July 2017 in annual terms totaled 7.8%) and correspond to the economy’s demand for money against the background of business activity recovery (gross domestic product in January-July 2017 increased by 1.1%).

The improvement in the balance of foreign trade (in January-June 2017, it stood at the level of USD0.4 billion) and the sustainability of balance of payments contributes to preserving foreign currency net supply in the foreign exchange market, as well as maintaining the stability of the Belarusian ruble exchange rate.

In general, it is expected that the increase in consumer prices will not exceed 7% by the end of 2017. Opportunities for further gradual reduction in interest rates in the economy will be determined by the probability and value of implementation of inflation risks constraining the achievement of the medium-term inflation target (no more than 5% in 2020).




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