The main directions of the economic development of Belarus
Belarus has the capacity to move to a new stage of economic development and to significantly increase the quality of people’s lives. In the future, Belarus should take its place among developed economies, where every person has equal chances to realize their potential regardless of their political, religious and other views, social origin and other differences.
However, today the Belarusian economy has a number of structural problems that need to be solved. If they are not solved, Belarus will be falling more and more behind its more developed neighbors and the developed world in general in terms of living standards, and the Belarusian youth will strive to go abroad and realize their potential there.
To address structural problems and achieve sustainable long-term growth, after resolving the political crisis and holding new free and fair elections, it is necessary to create a new institutional framework. We believe that it has to be in line with the following principles:
- Adaptation and development of social infrastructure, including systems of education, healthcare, culture, as well as local governance mechanisms, in accordance with the values and needs of the Belarusian society;
- Independence of the judiciary system from other branches of power;
- Change of the role of the State in economic development. The State should stop being a “progressor” that governs and directs economic development and become a guarantor of the development of institutions and social infrastructure;
- Creation of equal and favorable conditions for all businesses regardless of a form of ownership, size, or sector;
- Increasing effectiveness of the management of state enterprises;
- Increasing effectiveness of the work of the social protection system;
- Increasing effectiveness, transparency, and flexibility of the labor market. The contract system has to be revised and inclined towards greater protection of the workers’ rights;
- Development of the financial market;
- Building a digital economy in which digitization helps ensure responsiveness, effectiveness, and transparency of the governance;
- Improving competitiveness and innovativeness of the economy through the development of entrepreneurship and startup ecosystems, as well as through building technological infrastructure and developing venture investments.
Of course, all these principles are only the basis, and they do not cover all the problems of the Belarusian economy. We want to show in which direction we need to work in order to increase the quality of life of the Belarusian people, bearing in mind that the current model of political and economic development in Belarus is unable to solve this task.
The document is developed by the Economic Group of the Coordination Council based on the broad consensus of Belarusian and foreign economists.