By Paul Goble
A group of Russian and international economic experts assembled by Moscow’s Higher School of Economics say that Russia’s growth over the next seven years will lag behind the worldwide average even if oil prices rise, that Vladimir Putin’s targets will not be met, and that Russia will thus be further behind in 2024 than it is now.
That is the conclusion of a HSE report published yesterday compiled on the basis of input from Sberbank CIB, Alpha Bank, the Moscow Institute of Economics, the Boston Consulting Group, JPMorgan, and Morgan Stanley among other, Mikhail Sergeyev, the economics editor of Nezavisimaya gazeta, writes today (ng.ru/economics/2017-02-15/4_6930_russia.html).
The world economy is currently growing at approximately three percent a year, the 25 specialists the HSE consulted say, while the Russian one is now stagnating and will not expand by more than two percent a year even at the end of that period and even assuming an increase in the price of oil.
“The experts obviously do not expect an intensification of crisis phenomena in the Russian economy,” Sergey Smirnov of HSE says; but “the prospects for the restoration of stable and dynamic growth also seem to them extremely doubtful,” with only the most optimistic suggesting that Russia might approach international rates of growth.
“In December of last year,” the Nezavisimaya gazeta journalist says, “economic activity fell compared to November in 39 regions; in 31, it remained at the same level; but it rose only in 12.” It is still in a depressed state; and only one in every seven regions of the Russian Federation is currently showing signs of coming out of the crisis.