New Opportunities or Old Challenges? Scenarios for Belarus Economy


    Kastryčnicky Economic Forum (KEF) is a new open platform for professional dialogue on Belarus’s sustainable development within the context of global economic development that was established by the Research Center of the Institute for Privatization and Management in association with the Belarus Economic Research and Outreach Center (BEROC) and CASE Belarus. The Conference “New Opportunities or Old Challenges? Scenarios for Belarus Economy” that takes place in Minsk, November 5th, 2013, will be the first event within the KEF framework.

    Although recent world economic processes have demonstrated their ability to influencethe economy of Belarus substantially, professional dialogue on the overall development of the country, including its social and economic reforms, to a great extent remains detached from the discussion of the global economic context. Moreover, the discussion on the need and ways of reforming the national economy takes place independently from public dialogue: outside the professional community there are more myths than understanding of the actual situation. These myths are formed on the background of the contradictions arising from the attempts to analyze Belarus’s economic environment superficially. For example, being one of the regional leaders in the ranking of ease of doing business, Belarusian economy, nevertheless, has the lowest share of private sector. With a well-developed industrial sector, direct foreign investments inflow remains low. In the last 20 years the country has been demonstrating the highest inflation and the minimum progress in reforms in the region but remains one of the leaders in terms of GDP growth. Examination of internal problems and challenges in isolation from the global context coupled with the weak link between public and professional debate not only diminishes the efficiency of social and economic policies but also discourages public trust towards such measures.
    Kastryčnicky Economic Forum (KEF) is a new platform for open to the public professional dialogue on sustainable development of Belarus within the global economic context. KEF-2013 is organized by the IPM Research Center in cooperation with BEROC and CASE Belarus. These organizations have extensive experience in research of the economy of Belarus and other countries in the region, developing recommendations for socio-economic policy, as well as promoting professional and public dialogue on pending national economic development issues. The leading think tanks and academic institutions of the EU, Russia, the Ukraine, the USA, etc. have become our partners. By consolidating thorough understanding of the situation within Belarus with the experience of the leading economists of the region, the KEF seeks to reap a good harvest of ideas to further sustainable development of the country which will gain support from the national eco-nomic agencies and society at large.
    The first conference within the Forum framework – "New Opportunities or Old Challenges? Scenarios for Belarus Economy" (KEF-2013) is intended as a baseline assessment of the current economic situation in Belarus with the account of tendencies observed in economies of its key trading partners and world economy as a whole and the opportunity to develop the concept and the format for further KEF engagement.


    Игорь Маринич

    Igor Marinich

    Coordinator KEF-2013