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Sep 27, 2020
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Fortune telling on the ruble. What will happen to the exchange rate, oil prices and wages?

The draft budget was drawn up on the basis of the forecast of economic development, which was prepared by the Ministry of Economy. That is, on the basis of what the ruble exchange rate, oil price, inflation, export-import, etc. will be like in the coming years.

“AiF” studied government fortune telling in the economic thickets.

The ruble will weaken, oil will rise in price

Now the dollar is worth around 75 rubles. But by the end of the year, according to the calculations of the Ministry of Economic Development, the ruble should strengthen to 71.2 per dollar.Then it will moderately weaken: in 2021 – to 72.4, in 2022 – to 73.1, in 2023 – to 73.8.

The ruble will fall in price, while oil will rise in price. But not as much as we would like. This year, the average annual price of Urals oil will be $ 41.8 per barrel, and then it will grow sluggishly: in 2021 – up to 45.3, in 2022 – up to 46.6, in 2023 – up to 47. five.

“This forecast is quite realistic. The oil price will grow very slowly and still will not rise above the “dock” levels, – believes Alexander Abramov, Head of the Laboratory for Analysis of Institutions and Financial Markets, RANEPA. – We need to forget about the times when oil cost 140 (June 2008) or 107 dollars per barrel (2011). The oil price will not be a driver of growth, but a factor that will moderately affect the dynamics of GDP. The government should proceed from these realities and look for a replacement. “

Will salaries really go up?

“This year we expect an increase of 1.5% in real wages instead of a decline of 3.6%, which was predicted earlier. As early as next year, real disposable income will fully recoup this year’s losses. Growth is predicted 3%, then – by 2.5% per year, – said Head of the Ministry of Economic Development Maxim Reshetnikov. – But the situation on the labor market remains difficult. The unemployment rate, according to the methodology of the International Labor Organization, in July reached 6.3%, currently 3.7 million people are officially unemployed. At the same time, the growth rate is slowing down: if in May the increase was on average 30 thousand people per day, in August – 13 thousand, then in recent weeks the increase was slightly more than 3 thousand people. Next year the situation will improve: the average annual unemployment rate will be 5.2%, and by the end of the year it will drop just below 5%, that is, it will actually return to the natural unemployment rate. “

“We were given a wonderful picture of real wage growth. How can you be serious about this? – comments Vice-Rector of the Financial University under the Government of the Russian Federation Alexander Safonov. – The exchange rate has dropped, salaries are being cut, bonuses too. Recently, the Hoteliers Association reported that 25% of the capital’s cafes after the quarantine did not start their activities. Didn’t survive. At the same time, Rosstat paints a completely different picture. What for? And there are doubts about the growth of real incomes of the population by 2.5-3% in the coming years. “

Price increase – plus 4%

“We estimate the growth rate of consumer prices at the end of this year at 3.8%,” Reshetnikov said. In 2021, inflation will be 3.7%, in 2022 and 2023 – 4%. Is Low Inflation Good or Bad? “Any good has its drawbacks. And if this benefit is being rigidly implemented – even more so, – answered Chief Economist of the Expert RA rating agency Anton Tabakh. – It is clear that a double-digit rise in prices is very bad, inflation of 7-8% is also not very good. But for the sake of inflation not being 5%, but 3.8%, of stifling economic growth and maintaining high interest rates when the whole world lowers them, I think it is unreasonable.

How will we make money?

Exports of goods from Russia this year will decrease by 23.5% – to 321.3 billion dollars, while imports will decrease by 7.6% – to 235.2 billion. But in the next three years, the ministry predicts a gradual recovery of indicators.

“The closure of borders did not affect the movement of goods. The reduction in foreign trade turnover is associated with a decrease in demand, says Director of the Institute of International Economics and Finance of the Russian Academy of Foreign Trade Alexander Knobel – In value terms, export revenue fell for the obvious reason – the prices of our commodities fell. But prices for non-primary exports did not fall or even rose. The current exchange rate is comfortable for exporters. But the situation is highly dependent on global demand for a particular product. Now the export of foodstuffs, chemical fertilizers, pharmaceuticals shows very good dynamics ”.

Where is the economy heading?

“The crisis has not acquired a systemic character. The economic downturn has been concentrated in the small and medium-sized business sector in a limited number of affected industries. There were no chains of non-payments, – said Minister Reshetnikov. – We estimate the decline in GDP this year at 3.9%. Next year we expect 3.3% growth. This means that the economy will reach the pre-crisis level in the third quarter of 2021 ”.

“This is very optimistic,” he said on this occasion the head of the Accounts Chamber Alexey Kudrin. I agree with him and Director of the Institute of Socioeconomics of the Moscow University of Finance and Law Alexander Buzgalin: “This forecast for a fall in the economy does not take into account the shadow sector, which has suffered especially badly. To be honest, I see no reason that the economy will rise above 1.5-2% than before the pandemic. More likely it will be the same or worse. For something to change, it is necessary to significantly change the economic policy and the rules of the game in the economy. We need long-term development programs with a concentration of resources in key areas. And there is a very tough responsibility of those who are responsible for them: officials and private business. Received investments from the state – report back. If you cannot return it, sell your palace, mortgage a yacht, etc. We need to include workers at the grassroots level in management so that they feel economic motivation and innovate, and not treat any business as a place where you can grab something and hit the road. Like, if the owner is thinking how to get more out of the enterprise and transfer money to offshore, then why should I do something here.

We need a progressive income tax and income redistribution. Yes, they introduce 15% of personal income tax for incomes over 5 million. But this is not enough. We must start not with 5 million, but with 5 billion rubles. and raise personal income tax for the rich to 45-50%. There are only 12 countries left in the world (post-Soviet, third world countries) that have the same flat taxation scale as ours. The rest have a progressive tax. It is unfair that there are tens of millions of people in Russia who live on 12–20 thousand rubles. per month, and 100 billionaires give to the treasury 13% each. And the upcoming increase in this rate by 2% for annual incomes above 5 million rubles. will not seriously change the situation. “

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