ANNOUNCEMENT 06 Jul 2009In July 2009, the government of Belarus announced a changed incentive to localise business operations.
NUMBER OF INTERVENTIONS
Decree # 371 of 6 July 2009 "On preferential consumer loans"
Decree # 1010 of 1 August 2009
Presidential Decree # 371, issued on 6 July 2009, on preferential consumer lending provides state support to the low-income households. Low-income families will be provided with subsidized loans during 2009 and 2010 to acquire goods listed in an accompanying Cabinet decision. To enjoy the preferential loan, an individual has to have the average monthly income per person not exceeding three "minimum consumer budgets", which is calculated for a family of four people to be approximately US $400. According to the estimates provided by the Belorussian government about 80 percent of the Belorussian households will be eligible for the subsidized loans. There is, however, a maximum amount that can be borrowed by one individual, which equals 300 times Base Rate or approximately US $3,700. Those loans are provided by five Belarusian banks and carry an annual interest rate of 10 percent and a payment period of up to three years. Currently, the inter-bank interest rate in Belarus exceeds 21 percent. The state will compensate for banks' losses from the government budget.
The list of products and firms eligible for the subsidized loans was defined by the Cabinet Decree # 1010 on 1 August 2009. The list contains more than 100 Belarusian companies which produce various goods such as furniture, refrigerators, televisions, vacuum cleaners, washing and kitchen machines, electric heaters, carpets, microwaves, monitors, motorcycles, stoves, mini-tractors and others. The Deputy Trade Minister of Belarus, Mr. Svyantsitski, emphasized that the issuance of such loans was expected to boost the sales of domestic products.