In April 2022, the EBRD’s Board of Governors decided to suspend access to the Bank’s resources by Belarus, in response to its support for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The Bank has closed its office in Minsk. Belarus continues to be a shareholder of the Bank.
In addition, we remain deeply concerned by the situation with human rights and freedom of speech inside Belarus. Ever since the disputed Presidential election of August 2020, we have urged the authorities to pursue an inclusive national dialogue to explore a way forward.
In the light of our Governors’ decision in April 2022, the Bank has notified relevant borrowers that their right to request any further drawdowns under their loan agreements with EBRD has been suspended.
Furthermore, the Bank notified relevant project entities that their right to any further disbursements under any grant agreements has also been suspended.
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The EBRD’s latest Belarus strategy was adopted on 7 September 2016
GDP forecast for Belarus’s Real GDP growth in 2023 2.0%
GDP forecast for Belarus’s Real GDP growth in 2024 1.3%
After a deep recession in 2022, GDP increased by 2.0 per cent year on year in the first half of 2023. A rebound in manufacturing, construction and retail trade drove the recovery, but the information and communication technology and transport sectors continued to decline. Exports rose by 12.4 per cent year on year in the period January to June 2023 and shifted away from western countries towards those in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS). At the same time imports increased by 22.6 per cent, indicating a revival of domestic demand. The authorities provided more than US$ 70 million in financial support to over 600 SMEs in the form of subsidies, soft loans and liquidity lines in the first half of 2023. Inflation came down sharply to 2.7 per cent in July 2023, a level not seen in many years, supported by a stable exchange rate. Nevertheless, economic uncertainty remains high. The impact of heavy sanctions on trade and logistical disruptions with EU economies are constraining export-oriented and high-tech sectors. The modest economic rebound in the first half of the year is thus likely to be short-lived, with growth moderating to 2.0 per cent in 2023 as a whole and 1.3 per cent in 2024.