Belarusian authorities once again devalued the national currency. Dollar - Br8680
As a result of a single trading session at the Belarusian currency and stock exchange on October 20 the U.S. dollar was set at Br8680, reported the tradings' participants.
The amount of trading was USD23,165 million (pre-sell orders - USD23,188 million, the purchase - USD19, 532 million).
The Russian ruble fell to Br277 (pre-sell orders - RUB899,951 the purchase - RUB391, 820 million), the market rate of the euro fell by Br260 to Br11900 (pre-sell orders - EUR10,108 million, the purchase - EUR7, 883 million).
FX rates set today at a single session from October 21 are the official rates of the National Bank. Limits for value fluctuations of the basket of currency set for the year 2011 are canceled. The practice of priority purchases of foreign currency to pay for medical products, natural gas and electricity is canceled too.
The extra session was introduced at the BCSE on September 14, 2011 to identify the "market" rate of foreign currency and to avoid official devaluation.
"We've found out, the rate of five thousand rubles is mathematically verified and economically justified. I believe that by the end of the week, maybe one and a half, when the speculative attitude of number of economic entities weakens, the rate will tend to the mark calculated and confirmed by certain mathematical calculations", said before the extra session the deputy chairman of the National Bank Taras Nadolny. However, for 26 days of tradings the dollar has risen from Br8600 after the first day of extra session to Br8790 at the tradings on October 19.
On the eve of a single session, the authorities have expressed optimism again.
"Keep in mind, the dollar rate won't be the same. Now we are to combine both sessions into a single one, literally in a few days, and the dollar rate will fall. To be honest, we supported the high dollar exchange rate without interfering and somewhere acted carefully", said President Alexander Lukashenka on October 18.
Deputy Chairman of the National Bank Taras Nadolny also expressed confidence in introducing of a single rate, which would have a positive impact at all sectors of the Belarusian economy. According to him, after the unification of the official trading session and the extra one, additional supply will arise at the market.
However, independent experts didn't share such optimism, arguing that the government woke up too late.
The unification of FX rate will cost a sharp devaluation of the official rate of the National Bank - Alexander Mukha the analyst of the research group BusinessForecast.by said on October 18 in an interview with Radio Liberty. - In the coming days we can expect a devaluation of the official rate of the National Bank at about 55-60%; depending on what will be the official rate and the market one.
We remind, on January 3, 2011 the dollar was Br3000. Thus, from the beginning of the year the Belarusian ruble devalued almost three times.
Experts predict that another devaluation would inevitably lead to the next phase of inflation, which will negatively affect the welfare and thus, the mood of the people.