IMF: What Will Happen To Belarus’ Economy After Pandemic Is Over

A global recession awaits the world in 2020, and Belarus will outrun the global average rate, as well as face a serious increase in unemployment. The latest issue of the World Economic Outlook by IMF experts reads.

The year-end GDP growth in Belarus amounted to 1,2%, and the projection for 2020 was minus 6% (the previous one was an increase of 0,3%). Partial recovery, according to experts, will start in 2021 with an increase of about 3,5%.

IMF WEO Belarus economy coronavirus crisis

Inflation in 2020-2021 is projected at 5,6% (the previous forecast was 4,8%). The unemployment rate will increase from 0,3% to 2,3% and 1,8%, respectively.

The WEO authors notes that the world has changed dramatically in the three months. And it is very likely that in 2020 the global economy will experience its worst recession since the Great Depression.

“This crisis is like no other. First, the shock is large. (…) Second, like in a war or a political crisis, there is continued severe uncertainty about the duration and intensity of the shock.”

As a result of the pandemic, the global economy is projected to contract sharply by 3 percent in 2020, much worse than during the 2008–09 financial crisis, the experts notes.

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“In a baseline scenario, which assumes that the pandemic fades in the second half of 2020 and containment efforts can be gradually unwound, the global economy is projected to grow by 5,8 percent in 2021 as economic activity normalizes, helped by policy support.

Many countries face a multi-layered crisis comprising a health shock, domestic economic disruptions, plummeting external demand, capital flow reversals, and a collapse in commodity prices. Risks of a worse outcome predominate.”

*For Belarus, projections are based on preliminary assumptions, which are yet to be formally agreed between Belarus and Russia, about parameters of a bilateral agreement on Belarus imports of crude oil.