Anti-crisis support measures in EDB member countries in 2020 (% of the country’s GDP)

26 March 2021

Armenia

Belarus

Kazakhstan

Kyrgyzstan

Russia

Tajikistan

Percentage of GDP

3.8

1.4

8.7

2.4

4.5

2.5

Compensation for GDP losses (%)

1.8–2.2

0.2–0.7

2.0–3.0

0.5–1.0

>2.0

0.4–1.2

Source: EDB calculations

Unemployment rates in most of the Bank’s member countries remained moderate in 2020 and showed signs of decline in late 2020 – early 2021. Government anti-crisis measures have helped a lot in stabilising the labour market.

Potential economic growth rates in most of the region’s countries fell by 0.5–1 p.p. compared to pre-pandemic levels. This was due to the pandemic’s negative impact on investment, innovation, and labour resources. In the medium term, government development programmes can be a key factor in restoring GDP growth rates in the region.

Services suffered significant losses from the pandemic but retain the potential for active recovery when restrictions are eased. Lower consumer demand and social distancing measures have caused a deep decline in retail, hospitality, as well as professional, cultural, and entertainment services.

Mineral extraction has shrunk due to lower global demand, falling hydrocarbon prices, and the OPEC+ agreement to reduce oil production. A gradual increase in demand and improvements in the market environment will help the extractive industries to recover in the medium term.

The manufacturing industries have adapted to pandemic challenges in most EDB countries. The production of food, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, machinery, and electrical equipment has shown a strong dynamic. Manufacturing has been much less affected by the pandemic compared to services, partly because of softer restrictions on businesses.

The deep recession in the transport sector was caused by supply chain disruptions and restrictions on cross-border movements.

Freight and passenger traffic in EDB member states in 2020

Source: EEC, АСТ

Freight traffic; Passenger traffic

Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan

 

Global food prices have grown significantly during the pandemic. In February 2021, the FAO index reached its highest monthly average since July 2014. The increases in food prices should be expected to slow down in the second half of 2021 provided that the pandemic subsides and restrictions are eased.

Inflation in EDB member countries accelerated temporarily in late 2020 – early 2021 above the target rates. This was mainly due to the significant global rise in food prices and the depreciation of the national currencies. Because of these factors, inflation in the Bank’s region of operations remained high at the start of 2021. Supply chain disruptions due to the pandemic and the cost of anti-epidemic interventions have exerted additional pressure on prices. When the pandemic subsides, the pro-inflationary effects from global food prices and supply chain disruptions will lessen, leading to a slowdown in inflation in the second half of the year.

The cycles of interest rate cuts in EDB member countries that supported the economies throughout 2020 have ended because of rising inflation risks.

Additional Information:

The Eurasian Development Bank (EDB) is an international financial institution promoting integration and development in its member countries – Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Russia, and Tajikistan. The EDB's charter capital totals US $7 billion. The Bank was established in January 2006 and is headquartered in Almaty. The EDB’s portfolio mainly consists of projects with an integration effect in the areas of transport infrastructure, digitalisation, green energy, agriculture, industry, and mechanical engineering.

The EDB Media Centre:

Alexander Savelyev +7 (985) 765 23 59 (Moscow)

Azima Sapargaliyeva +7 (777) 750 00 08 (Almaty)

Sergey Gorbachev +7 (916) 727 22 00 (Moscow)

pressa@eabr.org

www.eabr.org

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2021