MOSCOW, August 31 (Itar-Tass) - RIA Novosti. Investments should revive the Russian economy. The Ministry of Economic Development and Trade expects that the surge in investment activity will become the basis for accelerating GDP growth in the next three years. Encourage investment will be the activation of lending - both the population and enterprises, said the head of the ministry Maxim Oreshkin, presenting an updated forecast for 2017-2020.
The new forecast of the Ministry of Economic Development comes from the growth of the Russian economy in 2017 by 2.1% (the previous estimate is 2%). At the same time, the ministry's forecasts for GDP growth in 2018-2020 have been significantly improved. So, GDP in 2018 will grow by 2.1%, in 2019 - by 2.2%, in 2020 it will accelerate to 2.3%. The previous forecast assumed growth of the country's economy by 1.5% annually.
"In general, the main difference between the current forecast and the forecast in April is the revised dynamics of investment and investment activity for the whole three-year period, and we expect that in the next three years the growth of investment activity will be in the range from 4% to 5%, thereby contributing to more high rates of economic growth, "Oreshkin said.
The increase in investments, according to the updated forecast, will make 4.1% in 2017, 4.7% in 2018, 5.6% in 2019, and in 2020 it will accelerate to 5.7%. Earlier, the ministry forecasted an increase in investment in 2017 - by 2%, in 2018 - by 2.2%, in 2019 - by 2%, and in 2020 - by 2.1%.
The basic macro forecast for 2018-2020 is based on the preservation of the current tax system of the Russian Federation, and changes in taxes are possible in the target version of the forecast, they are still being discussed.
The RF Ministry of Economic Development also fails to put in the current forecast for 2018-2020 the possibility of expanding the US sanctions for the state debt of the Russian Federation, but takes into account the preservation of the sanctions of the West for the next three years.
The outlook is too optimistic and even ambitious, says Alexei Deviatov, chief analyst at Uralsib Bank
"Even for this year, the outlook looks excessively optimistic, and I can not even say about the rest of the year, where such optimism is." In the second quarter, the figure of 2.5% growth was achieved due to one-off factors, primarily cold weather, when it grew coal production, rail transportation, thermal power production.The growth rate, which allows us to reach 2.1% for the year, we will not be in the second half of the year, "RIA Novosti said.
According to him, Uralsib's current forecast for economic growth in 2017 is kept at 1.3% and can be slightly revised up to 1.5%.
Similar estimates were also made by Nordea Bank - the bank did not correct its forecasts for GDP growth in 2017 at 1.6%, in 2018-2019 - about 1.5%.
"It's clear that now we have such a recovery, it's a rebound after two years of recession - so now we see quite confident growth rates, but next year will need to grow from a higher base." We do not yet see the potential for such growth, - the analyst of "Nordea bank" Tatyana Evdokimova considers.
According to her, the data of the second quarter of this year will be the most positive by the end of the year, and in the third or fourth quarter there will be a slowdown in growth rates. Rosstat tentatively estimated GDP growth in the second quarter at 2.5% in annual terms.
The Minister of Economic Development, on the contrary, is optimistic and expects GDP growth in August-September to return to its previous trajectory after the July slowdown - when growth slowed to 1.5% from 2.9% in June.
To promote investment in the Russian economy will be the expansion of investment lending, the improvement of working conditions for business and the active growth of final demand. This demand will be supported and retail lending, explained Oreshkin.
Inflation in Russia at the end of 2017 will be record low and may even be below the revised forecast of the Ministry of Economic Development in 3.7%. Oreshkin believes that the current slowdown in the growth of consumer prices gives the Central Bank the opportunity to reduce the key rate, which will lead to a decrease in real interest rates and spur credit expansion.
In accordance with the new forecast of the Ministry of Economic Development, inflation in the Russian Federation in 2018-2020 will be at the level of 4%. "We see no reason why the Central Bank could not reach the target values here," the minister added.
Conservative budgetary policy and the mechanism of the budgetary rule, which alleviates the dependence of the ruble exchange rate on oil prices, also assists the business mood, Oreshkin is sure.
"Indeed, we see by the first half of the year that it is investments that are growing at an extremely high pace, while consumption remains very weak." In principle, there are certain prerequisites for these trends to continue. "Here, a stable ruble exchange rate is important, which allows more predictably build investment plans, buy imported technologies, "Yevdokimova of Nordea Bank believes.
Devyatov believes that the growth of investment in Russia this year will exceed 4%, but mostly not at the expense of private investment. "As far as I understand, these are our big projects - the Crimean Bridge, the Power of Siberia, and private investments are not growing very much, and where we have such a huge increase in investments - I do not understand," Devyatov said.
According to Evdokimova, the increase in investments can be put by the reduction in the last months of the company's profits, and if this trend continues, it may slightly hamper the favorable development of the scenario.
To accelerate the growth of investments, there are three factors, the chief economist of the EDB, Yaroslav Lissovolik, believes. "The first is due to the fact that interest rates have fallen and they will continue to decline, which will contribute to the growth of lending and, accordingly, this should support investment. The second factor is a slowdown in capital outflows, we believe that in the second half of the year it will slow down somewhat compared with the first half of the year, and during the next year it will be lower than during this year, a net outflow of capital, "- said the economist.
The third factor is the structural measures taken by the Ministry of Economic Development, including in terms of supporting project financing in order to support the growth of investments, explained Lisovolik.
Ruble and oil are stable
The April macroeconomic forecast of the Ministry of Economic Development suggested that the ruble at the oil price of $ 40 per barrel will reach 68 rubles per dollar by the end of the year. The new forecast comes from the fact that the rate will be 63 rubles per dollar at the end of this year.
"We estimate the current exchange rate as very close to the fundamental one, and we do not expect a radical change in the rate in the coming quarters, but we expect some weakening of the ruble, literally by 1-2 rubles by the end of this year, which will be associated with the continued recovery of domestic demand and import growth, which will be a little "poddavlivat" exchange rate, "- said Oreshkin.
The average exchange rate for 2017 will be 59.7 rubles per dollar against 64.4 rubles per dollar, laid in the previous version of the forecast.
In 2018, the average annual rate of the Russian currency, according to the Ministry of Economic Development, will be 64.7 rubles per dollar instead of the previously forecasted 69.8 rubles per dollar. In 2019, the ruble will weaken to 66.9 rubles per dollar instead of 71.2 rubles per dollar, and in 2020 - to 68 rubles per dollar instead of 72.7 rubles per dollar, laid in the previous version of the forecast.
Speaking about oil prices, Oreshkin also noted that they will be stable at least until the end of the first quarter of 2018 and will fall to $ 41-42 per barrel of Urals oil by the middle of next year.
As a result of this year, the average price for oil will be $ 49 per barrel, in 2018, the forecast was raised to $ 43.8 from $ 40.8 per barrel, estimates for 2019-2020 were maintained at $ 41.6 and $ 42.2 per barrel .
The Ministry of Economic Development, in addition to the basic one, prepared two more variants of the forecast of the socio-economic development of the Russian Federation for 2017-2020 - the target and the conservative one. The difference between the base and the conservative is the more negative dynamics of oil prices.
The target forecast is much more interesting in the context of the president's instruction to develop a plan for the development of the country's economy until 2025, which will allow Russia to reach the rates of economic growth above the world at the turn of 2019-2020. Earlier, Oreshkin said that it was in this scenario that the measures of plan-2025 were taken into account.
On Thursday, Oreshkin acknowledged that the measures implemented by the government to accelerate GDP growth are still not sufficient to bring the country's economy to a growth rate not lower than the world, but the government will continue to work in this direction and will offer new ideas.
In the April version of the target scenario for the forecast of social and economic development, the GDP growth in the Russian Federation was estimated at 2%, in 2018 - at 1.7%, in 2019 and 2020 - 2.5% and 3.1%, respectively. In the current version of the forecast, the GDP growth rate in 2017 was increased to 2.1%, in 2018 - to 2.2%, in 2019 - to 2.6%. The benchmark for GDP growth in Russia in 2020 remained the same - 3.1%.
"The target scenario as a whole remains without significant changes, the indicators of 2017-2018 have been revised, they have been updated taking into account the current dynamics and measures already implemented." We look better than we looked in the previous target scenario, but for the time being those measures that are implemented , they are not enough to reach 3.1% of GDP, "Oreshkin said.
According to Lisovolik, without additional measures to achieve growth of 3.1% is unlikely to succeed. "All that is above 2%, at the moment requires additional structural measures, I think that measures will be necessary, first of all, in the sphere of increasing labor productivity, the emphasis on this is now beginning to be made to a greater extent," the economist said.
As the expert of the research and forecasting group of ACRA Dmitriy Kulikov believes, it is important for the authorities to understand the "what niche other than the energy sector we could take - and create incentives for development in this area." The transition period, he said, may be accompanied by lower growth rates than in the whole world.
"In addition, we are likely to lose 0.3-0.4 percentage points of growth due to the reduction in the workforce in the next five years." Our estimate of the growth potential in the medium and long term is 1.5% per year ", - he said.
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