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The calculation of forecast values of macroeconomic indicators until end-2004, carried out by IET, demonstrates that the amount of GDP will increase by 6.9 per cent by the end of the year, while investment in fixed assets and exports will be at 111.5 per cent and 129.4 per cent as compared with the figures registered in the preceding year.

The economic recovery observed in 1999 through 2004 occurred at the background of simultaneous recovery of positive dynamics in both the sector of production of goods and services sector. In January through September of 2004, the amount of GDP made Rub. 12164.4 billion and increased by 7.0 per cent in comparison with the figures registered in the respective period of the preceding year. While in 2004 the added value in the sector of manufacturing of goods grew by 6.2 per cent, the market services increased by 7.5 per cent. In 2003 and 2004, the dynamics of market services were most significantly affected by the accelerating rates of growth in services rendered by transport, communications, trade, commercial activities ensuring market operation, and transactions with real estate.

In the last five years, at the background of a stable growth in effective household demand the turnover of retail trade increased at the rates outpacing the GDP dynamics. In January through November of 2004, the index of turnover of retail trade made 111.8 per cent. The development of trade was accompanied by the intensive development of the material and technical basis of the sector and shifts in the structure of rendered services. The increase in the role played by organized forms of trade in the structure of turnover was accompanies by an intensive growth in trading space, warehouses, and services. Trade demonstrates a growing demand for equipment, information services, services rendered by the sector of communications and transport. The share of trade in the GDP produced in 2004 made 22.6 per cent. It should be noted that dynamic structural shifts were a characteristic feature of the development of this sector of the economy. First, the favorable changes in demand on the world market have determined the outpacing rates of growth and an increase in the specific weight of foreign trade in the structure of the trade turnover. Second, the specific feature of the Russian economy was almost twofold excess of the amounts of the wholesale trade over the retail trade turnover. As business activity revived, the intensive growth in wholesale trade was supported by the expanding demand for material and technical resources on the domestic market.

The growing demand for industrial goods was accompanied by increasing use of transport capacities. In January through November of 2004, the commercial freight turnover grew by 6.4 per cent, while industrial output increased by 6.2 per cent. Export oriented industries had the most important impact on the changes in demand for transport services. In September, the export freight of rail road transport increased by 11.5 per cent in comparison with the figures registered in the respective period of the preceding year. The growth in the freight turnover of pipeline transport made 6.7 per cent as compared with the figures observed in January through October of 2003. As concerns the rates of growth in freight of staple goods by the railroad transport, oil, oil products, ferrous and non-ferrous ores, and products of ferrous metallurgy retain their leading positions.

Communications sector is one of the most prospective and rapidly developing sectors of the economy. In January through November of 2004, the rates of increase in rendered communications services made 27.3 per cent. The share of telephone communications accounted for almost three fourth of the total proceeds of the sector, including the proceeds of mobile communications, which were at 40 per cent. as on October 1, 2004, the total number of subscribers of mobile operators made 58.5 thousand and increased by 23 million subscribers, or 64.8 per cent in comparison with 23 million subscribers registered in the beginning of the year.

1Q 2Q 3Q 4Q 1Q 2Q 3Q 4Q 1Q 2Q 3Q 4Q 1Q 2Q 3Q 4Q 2001 2002 2003 Industry Construction Transport Retail trade turnover Output of products and services of base sectors Fig. 1 Changes in rates of growth across the sectors of the economy in 2001 through 2003, in % of the figures registered in the respective period of the preceding year The simultaneous growth of investment and consumer markets has determined the enhancement of the role played by the domestic demand in the formation of economic dynamics. According to the experience accumulated over the last 6 years, the ratio between investment demand and final consumption most acutely reacts to the changes in export proceeds and determines the specifics of the domestic market functioning. Sharp fluctuations of investment expenditures for reproduction of fixed assets were compensated by a smooth shift in the dynamics of final household consumption.

-1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 --Gross Domestic Product Final consumption of households Investment in fixed assets Fig. 1 Changes in the dynamics of GDP across the components of final demand in 1999 through 2004, in % of the figures registered in the preceding year The positive dynamics of final consumption were a factor behind the stable development of the domestic market. The growth in the scale of final consumption occurred at the background of a rather stable persistence of the ratio between the household consumption and social transfers received from state institutions and noncommercial organizations. The support of the dynamics of domestic demand was based on the growth in real wages and salaries and household incomes, what was accompanied by the redistribution of incomes from enterprises to households. These developments resulted in the end in an increase in production costs and a decline in profitability of production.

In 2003, at the background of an intensive growth in output, there became perceptible that the rate of increase in labor productivity became closer to the rates of growth in wages and salaries. However, the impact of this process on the changes in the indicators of efficiency of the operations carried out by enterprises and organizations remained rather insignificant and unstable. In 2004, the dynamics of wages and salaries again outpaced the growth in labor productivity. In January through November of 2004, the increase in real wages and salaries made 11.5 per cent as compared with 9.8 per cent registered in the respective period of the preceding year. Low labor productivity and low efficiency of utilization of resources were a major factor negatively affecting the dynamics of economic development. It should be noted that the potential for a further increase in the costs associated with remuneration of labor began feel the constraints of the changes in the competitive environment on commodity markets due to the Ruble appreciation and growing pressure on the part of imports.

Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q Q 25,20,15,10,5,0,1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 -5,-10,-15,-20,-25,GDP Domestic demand External demand Fig. 1 The rates of growth in the domestic and external demand in 1992 through 2004, in per cent of the figures registered in the preceding year The increasing influence of external factors on the nature of development of the Russian economy characteristic for the recovery growth occurred at the background of expanding demand and favorable shifts of prices on world commodity and raw materials markets. The external factors related to both high prices of oil and metals and the potential for a significant rise in the export of energy resources can explain almost one third of the economic growth. In January through October of 2004, the amount of Russian export of goods grew by 32.1 per cent as compared with the figures registered in the respective period of the preceding year.

The relative decline in the prices of imported raw materials and material and technical resource has finally had a significant impact on the changes in the competitive environment and detected problem zones of growth. In particular, while the dynamics of consumer imports were checked by the rather strong positions of Russian producers of food products, the increase in investment imports was accompanied by the squeezing of Russian producers from the respective markets. As a result, taking into account both the positive impact of expansion of the domestic demand and the negative impact of the real exchange rate appreciation and changes in the ratio between domestic prices and import prices, the general competitive positions of Russian producers have returned to the level registered in precrisis 1997. These developments have sharply intensified competition between domestic products and imported commodities shifting the center of gravity towards non-price factors.

The calculation of forecast values of macroeconomic indicators until end-2004, carried out by IET, demonstrates that the amount of GDP will increase by 6.9 per cent by the end of the year, while investment in fixed assets and exports will be at 111.5 per cent and 129.4 per cent as compared with the figures registered in the preceding year. For a more detailed forecast of the dynamics of key macroeconomic indicators in 2005, see the bulletin Stsenarny makroekonomicheskiy prognoz na 2005 g. presented on the IET web site at www.iet.ru.

O. Izryadnova Oil and natural gas sector In 2004, the development of oil and natural gas sector was characterized by the persistence of the trend towards the growth in production. In January through November of 2004, the volume of oil output (including gas condensate) increased by 9.1 per cent in comparison with the figures registered in the respective period of the preceding year, primarily at the expense of an increase in exports. The world oil prices were at an exceptionally high level, what permitted to significantly increase export proceeds. The current situation on the world market allows to expect that the world oil prices will remain at a rather high level and the favorable conditions of development of the oil and natural gas sector will persist in the short term.

The price situation on the world oil markets determined the development of the oil and natural gas sector of the Russian economy. Due to the fact that the world economy grew at rather high rates, OPEC13 member countries had in place the limitations on oil extraction, and production of oil in Iraq decreased, the world oil prices were at an exceptionally high level. The persistence of high oil prices was facilitated by a decline in oil production in the Mexico Gulf as a result of the September hurricane, the conflict in the Niger delta, as well as strikes in Nigeria, Norway, and Brazil. As a result of these developments, in October of 2004 the average price of the Brent oil reached US $ 49.6 per barrel, while the price of Russian Urals oil exceeded US $ 42 per barrel. In 2004, the average price of the oil basket of OPEC member countries was above the upper target price threshold (US $ 22 to US $ per barrel) set by the organization. In January through September of 2004, the average price of Russian Urals oil on the world (European) market oil was at US $ 33.0 per barrel. At the end of 2004, there was observed a decline in the world oil prices determined by the growing production of oil in the OPEC14 member countries, the restoration of the volumes of extraction of oil in the Mexico Gulf, and increasing supply of oil from the countries of the former Soviet Union. In November of 2004, the average Urals oil prices decreased to US $ 38.2 per barrel (see Table 1).

Table World oil prices in 2004, US $ per barrel.

2004 2004 2004 2004 1 Q 2 Q 3 Q October November Brent, UK 31,95 35,36 41,54 49,64 42,Urals, Russia 28,94 32,54 37,41 42,34 38,OPEC oil basket 30,80 34,41 38,97 45,37 38,Source: OECD International Energy Agency, OPEC.

The development of the oil and natural gas sector of the economy in 2004 was characterized by a persisting trend towards an increase in extraction of oil and oil products, which formed in through 2003. In January through November of 2004, the volume of oil output increased by 9.2 per cent in comparison with the figures registered in the respective period of the preceding year, while the increase in primary processing of oil grew by 2.1 per cent. An increase in extraction of natural gas first registered in 2002 continued in January through October of 2004 making 2.1 per cent (see Table 2). At the same time, in the oil sector there was observed a certain decrease in investment activity: in January through October of 2004, the volume of oil production drilling declined by 2.0 per cent as compared with the figures registered in the respective period of the preceding year, while the oil surveying drillIn accordance with the decisions taken at the September (2003) OPEC conference, since November 1, 2003, the OPEC oil extraction quotas were reduced by 900 thousand barrels a day (from 25.4 to 24.5 million barrels a day), while in accordance with the decision taken in the course of the February and March (2004) OPEC conferences, the quotas on oil extraction by the organizations member countries were further reduced by 1 million barrels a day to 23.5 million barrels a day.

In accordance with the decisions taken at the June (2004) OPEC conference, since July 1, 2004, the OPEC oil extraction quotas were increased to 25.5 million barrels a day and to 26.0 million barrels a day since August 1, 2004. In accordance with the decision taken in the course of the September (2004) OPEC conferences, the quotas on oil extraction by the organizations member countries were further increased to 27.0 million barrels a day since November 1, 2004, i.e. by additional 1 million barrels.

ing decreased by 18.1 per cent (this development may be explained by the sufficient level of available reserves) and commissioning of new oil drilling wells declined by 4.3 per cent. in the oil processing industry, the output of oil products refined with the use of modern processing technologies increased by 2.1 per cent, while the degree of processing of crude oil grew from 70.4 per cent in January through October of 2003 to 71.8 per cent in January through October of 2004. The share of high octane gasoline in the total amount of motor gasoline increased from 52.7 per cent in January through October of 2003 to 55.4 per cent in 2004.

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