Besides, in the following month US$ 2,006.187 million were allocated for repayment of the government internal foreign currency loan (Minfin Bonds) and US$ 264.995 million were allocated for coupon payments.
Total Russian payments under the external debt amounted to US$ 5.6 billion during the January – April period.
Since the Bank of Russian is using REPO transactions as a monetary policy tool on an ever wider scale, as of this month we will be presenting data on the results of Central Bank’s usage of this tool. It is worth reminding that a REPO transaction is a sale of financial assets with a commitment to buy these assets back after a certain period of time at a predetermined price.
The procedure for REPO transactions has been established in the normative documents of the Bank of Russia valid from 22 September, 1999: Instruction of the Bank of Russia # 639-Y “On Introducing Changes and Additions to the Regulation “On the Servicing and Circulation of Issues of Government Short-term Couponless Bonds”” of 17 September, 1999 and Instruction of the Bank of Russia # 640-Y “On Conducting Repo Transactions with GKO-OFZs between Dealers” (Published in the “Bulletin of the Bank of Russia” # 59). In accordance with these documents it is proposed that:
• only dealers-credit institutions that for the past three months have been financially stable, have entered into a “General Agreement on Participation in Transactions with GKO-OFZ” and have a portfolio of base GKO-OFZ issues with the market value at least RUR 40 million shall be allowed to engage in REPO transactions;
• GKO-OFZ issues included in the ломбардный list with the term to maturity and/ or the next coupon payment of at least 15 days shall be regarded base issues for REPO transactions;
• REPO transactions may be entered into only for a term of one or two days, and subsequently for seven and 14 days.
RUR Billion US$ Billion 2-8.9.3-9.02.3-9.03.19-25.8.16-22.9.9-15.12.6-12.01.14-20.10.11-17.11.23-29.12.20-26.01.17-23.02.17-23.03.14-20.04.12-18.05.30.9-184.108.40.206-220.127.116.11-1.12.31.03-6.04.28.04-4.05.Stock-exchange modified REPO transactions (SMR) are a new instrument of monetary policy used by the Bank of Russia. They are conducted in order to provide liquidity. In the course of such an operation the Bank of Russia sells individual issues of government bonds that it currently owns with a commitment to buy them back. An SMR transaction includes two stages:
1) the Bank of Russia sells government securities at an auction;
2) the Bank of Russia buys back previously sold government securities on the basis of an irrevocable public offer.
In January the amount of REPO transactions with the Bank of Russia was high due to Rouble deficit in the middle of the month. The amount of direct REPO transactions grew 24 percent as opposed to December, reaching RUR 31.98 billion. This is 2.5 times more than the turnover in the government bond market. The amount of reverse REPO transactions also grew to RUR 709.16 billion (153 times as compared to December, 2002).
Due to the fact that banks had large amounts of excessive liquidity in February, the amount of direct REPO transactions with the Bank of Russia fell 8.5 times as compared to January, reaching only RUR 3.billion. Reverse REPO transactions did not exceed RUR 70 billion.
In March direct REPO transactions with the Bank of Russia amounted only to RUR 48.33 million due to excessive Rouble liquidity. The amount of reverse REPO transactions carried out by the Central Bank of Russia fell to RUR 68.5 billion (72 percent of trade volume at the auction on government securities).
In April, in order to eliminate excessive Rouble liquidity, the Central Bank of Russia actively engaged in placing bonds from its portfolio on conditions of repurchase. Hence, repurchase auctions conducted by the CB RF in April demonstrated the greatest turnover. E.g., the total volume of REPO transactions was RUR 147.5 billion in April. At five out of six auctions the demand for securities from the CB RF portfolio on condition of repurchase exceeded the offer.
P. Trounin Investment in fixed assets In January through April of 2003, the amount of investment in fixed assets made Rub. 460.1 billion increasing by 10.9 % in comparison with the figures registered in the respective period of the preceding year.
Early this year, the investment activity is characterized by more intensive dynamics than in the beginning of 2002.
The expansion of the investment demand in the 1st quarter of 2003 is determined by the aggregate influence of a number of current business factors.
The intensive development of the export oriented sector of the economy in the situation of extremely favorable conditions formed on the world markets of hydrocarbon raw materials and metals initiated the expansion of investment demand. The balanced result of the economy at large increased 1.9 times as compared with the figures registered in the 1st quarter of 2002. Profits of industries made Rub. 179.0 billion, at the same time, the share of fuel industries made about 30 % of this amount. As the proceeds of the economy grew, the share of investment in fixed assets in GDP increased by almost 2 percentage points in comparison with the figures registered in the first quarter of 2002 and made 11.8 % of GDP.
The financial results of operations across industries improve at the background of gradual squeezing of inefficient owners, what results in the rationalization of financial flows and formation of additional sources of investment resources. Since early 2003, the positive effect of the tax reform implemented in 2002 and a number of measures aimed to prevent “capital flight” has started to show. In comparison with the figures registered in the 1st quarter of 2002, the amount of Russian investment abroad decreased by 28.7 %. The favorable changes in the legal and normative base resulted in the recovery of the trend towards outpacing growth in foreign investment in comparison with domestic investment. In the first quarter of 2003, foreign direct investment in the Russia’s economy increased by 24.7 % as compared with the figures observed in the respective period of the preceding year and made US $ 1.03 billion.
The reduction of the refinancing rate of the Bank of Russia from 25 % in March of 2002 to 18 % in February of 2003 resulted in lower levels of yields from investment of assets in financial instruments and increased the attractiveness of investment in the real sector of the economy. The source of support of investment activity in the beginning of 2003 was the expansion of crediting of the real sector on the part of the banking system. The low real cost of credit resources allowed enterprises to attract considerable borrowed funds for financing of investment projects.
As household incomes grew, there formed a significant potential for private investment. Household savings in the form of cash deposits, securities, and purchase of foreign exchange increased to 21.3 % of the total amount of household incomes as compared with 16.5 % registered in the 1st quarter of 2002 and 9.6 % observed in the 1st quarter of 2001.
The changes in the structure of investment in fixed assets occurred at the background of increasing share of manufacturing industries. The share of investment in fixed assets in industry has increased to 50.2 % as compared with 47.9 % registered in the 1st quarter of 2002, while the respective figures in construction made 3.8 % as compared with 3.2 %. As concerns transport and communications, there the decrease in the share of investment expenditures made about 1.2 percentage points.
The growth in the share of investment in industry was accompanied by changes in the industrial, reproduction, and technological structures of investment expenditures. On the whole, the sectoral structure of investment in industry remains unfavorable.
Figure Changes in the structure of investment across industries in the 1st quarter of 2003 as compared with the figures registered in the 1st quarter of 2002, in % ----The specific weight of investment in mechanical engineering makes 6.0 % of the total amount of investment in industry, while the respective indicator of food industry makes 9.2 % and light industry – 0.%. The aggregate share of investment in fuel industry and metallurgy exceeds 65 %.
This year, the structural shifts in investment are determined by the increasing share of fuel industry, by the recovering business activity in natural gas industry, and food industry. At the current technological, reproduction, and age structure of fixed assets, the level of their physical and moral deterioration, the amount and structure of investment does not correspond to the conditions of effective modernization of fixed assets.
O. Izryadnova The Real Sector: Factors and Trends In accordance with the Regulations of elaboration and presentation of its data, the RF Goskomstat has published more precise annual data and revised nominal and real amounts of base indicators of national accounts in 1995 through 2002. The revision of the time series was accompanied by the methodological harmonization of the indicators of production and GDP utilization in current and constant prices across the whole time series. Besides, the statistical data relating to the retail trade turnover, amount of paid services to households, foreign trade turnover, and the balance of payments were actualized. The time series covering the whole period under observation is built on the basis of bridging periods of 1995 through 2000 and газовая лесная, пищевая топливная химическая машиностроение электроэнергетика нефтедобывающая черная металлургия цветная металлургия нефтеперерабатывающая through 2002 calculated, accordingly, in average annual prices of 1995 and 2000. As a result of the verification of the data, there were adjusted nominal amounts and dynamics of the real GDP amount. Major changes were introduced as concerns the period from 1995 till 2000. According to the adjusted data, in GDP grew by 6.4 % and in 2000 – by 10.0 %, what is by 1 percentage point above the previously published values of the respective indicators. On the whole, as concerns the period from 2000 till 2002, the values of the amount of GDP and its individual components in current prices underwent no significant changes in comparison with the previously published data. In 2002, the GDP amount made Rub. 10863.4 billion and increased by 4.3 % in comparison with the figures registered in the preceding year.
Table Changes in the dynamics of GDP utilization as broken down by the components in % of the values registered in the preceding year, in constant prices 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 Gross domestic product -3,6 1,4 -5,3 6,4 10,0 5,0 4,Expenditures for final consumption -2,6 2,8 -2,1 -1,2 5,6 6,9 7,Of households -4,9 5,0 -3,4 -2,9 7,3 9,9 8,Of state agencies 3,1 -2,4 1,0 3,1 2,0 -1,7 2, On not-for-profit organizations 0,6 -0,8 0,5 -1,4 1,6 1,9 4, Gross accumulation -14,0 -4,1 -45,2 -6,6 75,2 16,5 1,Gross accumulation of fixed capital -22,2 -7,9 -12,4 6,4 18,1 10,5 3,Net exports 22,0 -5,9 131,8 79,2 -15,9 -13,6 -4, Exports 3,7 -0,5 1,9 11,2 9,5 3,6 10, Imports 1,3 0,4 -17,4 -17,0 32,4 18,0 19,Source: RF Goskomstat Figure 1 Changes in the dynamics of supplies to the internal and external markets in 1996 through 2002, in % of the figures registered in the preceding year, in constant prices 14,12,10,8,6,4,2,0,1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 -2,-4,-6,-8,-10,Export Supplies of domestically produced goods to the internal market The presentation of the assessments of the real GDP in constant prices, including such its components as exports and imports, allow to adjust the estimates of the impact of external and domestic demand on the rates of economic growth in the post-crisis period. While in the period from 1999 till 2001 the accelerated development of the Russia’s economy occurred at the background of simultaneous growth of supply of the domestic and foreign markets, in 2002 high dynamics of growth in GDP was to a considerable extent determined by the intensive expansion of exports. The specific feature of economic development taking place in 2002 was shrinking supply of domestic products on the internal market. The comparison between the dynamics of export of fuels and mineral and raw material resources and the rates of production of manufacturing industries demonstrate that since 2001 the trend towards a decrease in the share of domestically manufactured products has recovered in the structure of formation of commodity resources of the domestic market.
The economic situation in the 1st quarter of 2003 formed under the impact of the favorable external business situation. According to the Ministry for Economic Development, the average monthly active balance of trade made US $ 4.9 billion in the first quarter, what was significantly above the values of the respective indicators of the preceding year and was comparable with the record levels registered in 2000. The growth in proceeds of the economy derived at the expense of export returns in the combination with the significantly increased inflow of foreign capital in the private sector created an additional incentive for expansion of domestic demand.
According to the preliminary estimates of the Ministry for Economic Development, in the first quarter of 2003 the increase in GDP made 6.4 % as compared with 3 % registered in the respective period of the preceding year. In contradistinction to 2002, this year there were registered outpacing rates of growth in production of goods in comparison with the output of services. The increase in production of goods made 6.% as compared with 2.9 % observed in the respective period of 2002, while output of services grew by 6.0 % as compared with 3.3 % registered in the preceding year. The intensive growth in the output of products and services was supported by increasing business activity in industry and construction. The amount of industrial output grew by 6 %, while the amount of construction works increased by 13.6 %. In the Russia’s economy, there is recovering the trend towards the outpacing growth in investment as compared with the dynamics of GDP and expenditures for final consumption. In the Russia’s economy, there recovered the trend towards outpacing rates of growth in investment as compared with GDP dynamics and expenditures for final consumption. While admitting that such high rates of growth in the beginning of this year are explained by low levels of the indicators observed in 2002, the new factors stimulating growth in production shall be also taken into account.
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