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End of welfare state  ? 95

9:10, — Politics

End of welfare state

The announcement of the your of frugality means the end of the welfare state.

The government released the action plan to introduce new economic measures. 25 paragraphs of the document cover main state spheres focusing on energy saving. The government expects launching innovation projects in 2013 to reduce power consumption in all industrial sectors. It is also planned to raise utility bills.

Economic consultant Alyaksandr Lukashevich speaks how the government and ordinary people will save in Hot Comment programme on Belsat TV.

The specialist emphasises that according to the plans of the government, the economy and production in Belarus will remain on the same level at the end of 2013.

Anatoly Tozik presented a position of the Belarusian authorities. He said clearly that the social sphere should not burden the governmental sector with its problems. It is the beginning of scaling down the welfare state concept, the model promoted by Alyaksandr Lukashenka. It's logical to save if you cannot earn money. The authorities admit they didn't learn how to earn. The are changing the social sector to be market-based, which is strange, because before that they should have reformed enterprises, plants, banks to answer requirements of a market economy, Lukashevich thinks.

The expert says the modernisation and innovation projects, on which the plans for 2013 focus, should have been carried out at the cost of several billion loans from the IMF and Russia, which were spend on food. The whole country has to economise now to pay interests on the spent loans.

Frugality needs investments too, but the Belarusian government invested only in salaries, because Belarusians are leaving the country, the economist says.

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