Updated at 22:06,23-05-2018

Official statisticians report sharp decrease in of trucks, tractors, agricultural machinery

by Dzmitry ZAYATS, naviny.by

Official statisticians report a dramatic year-on-year decrease in Belarus exports of trucks, tractors and agricultural equipment in the first four months of 2013, BelPAN said.

In particular, during the period, Belarus exported 2,230 trucks, 49.1 percent less than in January-April 2012, which were worth a total of $295.3 million, a 44.6-percent year-on-year decrease.

Belarus exported 23,900 tractors and truck tractors, a 21.5-percent decrease in terms of quantity and a 22.4-percent in terms of quality.

Exports of agricultural equipment fell by 12.4 percent in physical terms and by 16.2 percent in terms of value.

According to official statisticians, the total export of machine-building products and other investment goods dropped by 22.8 percent year-on-year to total $1,280 million.

Belarusian economists link the decrease in the export of investment goods to a fall in demand in the Russian market.

"The situation in the Russian market is unfavorable: there is stagnation in domestic demand, industrial output has decreased and there is no rise in fixed capital expenditures, and therefore the demand for Belarusian investment goods has fallen," said Iryna Tachytskaya, director of the research center of the Institute of Privatization and Management.

Amid the current difficult economic situation, Russian authorities have begun to support domestic manufacturers, explains Heorhiy Hryts, deputy chairman of the Belarusian Scientific and Industrial Association. As for the export of trucks, the decrease in it was due to the fact that Russia introduced the more stringent Euro 4 emission standard for diesel vehicles, he noted.

"One more reason for the decrease in Belarus exports is that Russia joined the World Trade Organization, which led to tougher competition in the Russian market," Mr. Hryts said.

However, the Belarusian government expects the situation to improve later in the year. Deputy Prime Minister Pyotr Prakapovich said in April that by end of the third quarter, Belarus would be on track to meet all targets for the industrial sector for 2013, including the target of increasing exports by no less than 15 percent.