Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Belarus Central Bank Hikes Rate 500bps to 27.00%

The National Bank of the Republic of Belarus will raise its refinancing rate by 500 basis points to 27.00% from 22.00% on the 1st of September, according to Belarusian news agency, NAVINY.BY.  The move is aimed at tackling Belarus' high inflation levels, as the East European nation deals with its economic crisis.  The Belarusian central bank last raised the refinancing rate by 200bps to 22.00% on the 17th of August, when it noted: "Along with general economic measures undertaken by the government, this tightening will help stabilize the external economic situation and limit inflation,".

The move will bring the total increase in the refinancing rate for 2011 to 1650 basis points (from 10.50%), the Bank previously also increased the interest rate by 200 basis points on the 13th of July, 22nd of June, and 1st of June.  Belarus reported consumer price inflation of 36.2% in the year to June, according to the National Statistic Committee, meanwhile the government is forecasting 2011 inflation of as much as 39%.  The USD-Belarussian ruble exchange rate has double on the black market, rising to as much as 7,000 per dollar (approx. 6,000 in July).



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