The former head of the National Bank is sure that Belarus should orient on the West, not on the East in prospect.
Russian first deputy prime minister Igor Shuvalov doesn’t exclude imposing the single currency within the framework of the Customs Union and Common Economic Area. He said this at the CIS international economic forum in Moscow. How real is the currency union of the three, will Belarus abolish its national currency, why does Russia negotiate an issue of the single currency?
According to Stanislau Bahdankevich, the former head of the National Bank of Belarus, an idea of introducing the single currency is popular in different parts of the world – in the Near East, North America (Canada, Mexico, and the US). There was a proposal to replace the dollar by the amero; introduction of the single currency is also discussed in South America.
"First the common economic area should be created, then a question of the single currency can be discussed," the expert note in an interview to "Zavtra Tvoey Strany". "I don’t think it is profitable for Belarus. The country lies in the far west of that eastern union, it has close ties with the European Union. If Belarus decides to abandon its national currency, it would be more profitable to choose the euro, not the currency that will work for Asia – the Asian part of Russia, Kazakhstan. We don’t have wide economic interests in that part of the world".
As Professor Bahdankevich thinks, the issue of the single currency is not acute. Russia has raw-material economy. It is weak risky economy. Belarus also has raw-material economy based on oil products and re-exporting raw oil and potash. Belarus can use the acting currency instruments to settle with Kazakhstan, with which the country has limited interests.
"I don’t think it is necessary for Belarus, even if it chooses the eastern way, to abolish the national currency. I don’t think the Belarusian ruler and the government will do this," Stanislau Bahdankevich says. "Moreover, there’s an example of Greece. If Greece had had the national currency, it would have easier for the country to tackle the current crisis."
In Bahdankevich’s opinion, Belarus should orient on the West, not on the East in prospect.