The beginning of the year is a traditional time for macroeconomic projections: no surprises — pleasant or not — to wait for the population in the coming months. We were asked to speak on this subject one of the most quoted and rating of Russian economists Mikhail Khazin, the President of Fund of economic researches, publicist, consultant and analyst.
Mikhail Leonidovich is known for its consistent rejection of liberal approaches in economy and criticism of the Russian government, in his opinion, these approaches are professing. He has not changed his principles and in conversation with our publication.
— Mikhail Leonidovich, the economic results of last year was controversial. The government said that the country began to see economic growth, the exchange rate stabilized and inflation fell to a historic low of 2.5%. However, incomes continued falling, and positive changes, looking into their wallets, citizens did not feel. So we now have: the beginning of growth or the end of the fall?
Don’t think 2017 was controversial from the point of view of the economy. It was an absolutely logical continuation of the previous years. The government can speak to the population on this account anything, but it’s just words.
The economic downturn in our country began in the fourth quarter of 2012. By 2013-2014, stopped the growth of incomes.
The fact is that when the decline begins, the earnings growth is still some time continuing by inertia. If the recession is short, people may not notice this. But in Russia the decline long lasting. He came to a stable level of 2-2. 5% per year.
Primarily this is due to the lack of investment for self-reproduction of the economy. Compensation of investment does not depend on us, because they are foreign. To return the capital to their homeland does not work. The only exception is the year 2015, when the head of the Central Bank Elvira Nabiullina, as I believe, on the orders of the International monetary Fund (IMF) made the risk of the ruble. In the result Russia has flowed from foreign capital — $200 billion, and the recession then was 8-10%. In subsequent years, the situation has returned to normal, the same is minus 2-2,5%, but greatly accelerated the fall in living standards of the population.
— What are your macroeconomic expectations this year — especially given the upcoming elections and distributed on this occasion promises? Will there be any change in the result, the life of ordinary people for the better?
In 2018, most likely, the decline will accelerate. Indirect evidence — there was a seasonal fall in economic growth.
Regardless of the results of the year, always in economy there are two recession — the summer and Christmas, and two rise — fall and spring. Judging by the fact that the autumn rise was not, we now, at the end of the Christmas holidays, felt quite a sharp decline. Whether a spring rise is not obvious. The reasons for this.
Unique government, which constantly comes to all sorts of rake. For example, in an economic downturn it raises taxes. If you do not change the economic model, it will not lead to anything, except to accelerate the decline.
— Can we expect major changes in the tax system after the election and in what capacity?
– If the government will not change, taxes will rise. The fact that the liberal government economic policy is balancing the budget. Today its task is to collect taxes. And the fact that this eliminated themselves taxpayers, it does not bother them. They live one day.
The strategy of the current government there. The government has tactical authority — Ministry of Finance and the strategic — Ministry of economy. The liberals always wanted the Ministry of Economics to drive under the Ministry of Finance.
Yegor Gaidar when he came to government at the end of 1991, created the joint Ministry of Finance and economy with the priority of the Ministry of Finance. Later Oleg Lobov managed to straighten the Ministry of economy, but in the end, his first was “let down” by selecting it from the branch departments and creating the Ministry of industry, and now, with the appointment of a former Ministry of Finance Maxim Oreshkin, the Ministry of economy in fact turned into a Department of the Ministry of Finance.
As a result of all these maneuvers in Russia no systematic economic strategy. And the tactic is this: if today, in order to replenish the budget, we need to eliminate all the small and medium business, it will be done. What the government’s doing — and nothing else!
— But members of the government assigns us is not the international monetary Fund and the Russian President. And Vladimir Putin all the years of his reign relied on the liberals at the head of the economic departments: Kudrin and Gref and Ulyukayev Nabiullina, Shuvalov and Dvorkovich, Siluanov and…. it Turns out, there are some factors and the results of their activities that make Putin over and over again put at the head of the economic bloc it liberals?
– The question suggests that in our country the President is the absolute source of power. This does not happen anywhere else, ever. As he said, Catherine II, answering the question, how do you manage to get along with your nobility: “I never hurt.”And her power was greater than Putin today.
Our elite economic and financial policy traditionally determined by the so-called liberal group, people focused on the world’s financial elite, which provided the world economy economic growth since 1944, with the adoption of the Bretton Woods agreements.
— Open a secret: who is included in this “liberal group”?
– We all know them. She is a family. It includes Igor Shuvalov, Alexander Voloshin. The performers include the group of Yegor Gaidar — Anatoly Chubais, it includes, for example, Elvira Nabiullina, Dvorkovich, Kudrin, and all privatization elite.
This group provided our country relations with the IMF and the inflow of foreign investment. 25 years, she was responsible for it. The slightest attempt of the other groups to get involved in this topic was over a wild scandals.
For example, when Vladimir Polevanov in 1994 was appointed head of the state property Committee of the Russian Federation and tried to stop the illegal privatization, the IMF announced Boris Yeltsin, if not Polevanov would be dismissed within two weeks of the loan from IMF will not. When the head of the Central Bank Victor Gerashchenko, in 1998, adopted the decision of the Central Bank bills, which broke the monopoly of the dollar, respectively, in the same way followed very strict requirement of the IMF to immediately reverse this decision.
But this is all interpretation of events from the distant 90s. We live in the end of the second decade of the XXI century and for 18 years we are governed not by Yeltsin and his “family»…
— In 1991, Russia adopted rules of the IMF — the Bretton Woods system. After the economic and financial system in our country began to define this group of people. However, it is in the last few years has suffered a series of heavy losses. The main blow for them was the coming to power in the United States Donald trump, who represents American regional elites, and does not represent the transnational financiers.
Today’s issue of the liberal group is objective. It has for many decades provided economic growth worldwide through the issue. At the present time to meet this growth, this group is just not. In relation to our country, it cannot provide a sufficient volume of foreign investments.
Representatives of this group began to ask questions: if you are unable to provide economic growth, why are you sitting here? In other words, the elite consensus, which was adopted in the early 1990s and who defended Vladimir Putin as President came to an end. I think in 2018 he will change to another consensus, and it is most interesting what happens in a presidential election year.
However, the process of change of elites will happen not only in our country but throughout the world. The group that really started to break to power in the late nineteenth century, made a powerful breakthrough in 1913, with the creation of the first private Central Bank — Federal reserve system of the United States, and which actually gained control of the Western world in 1944 and the rest of the world in 1991, it has exhausted its resources. This year will happen a fundamental change of elites, and this is a very significant event.
— Can you name names of specific individuals not from the liberal camp who could occupy key posts at the head of the economic block of the government after the election?
— First, there must be some internal elite consensus. They should decide now who will determine economic policy. It will be decided in an elite, secretive level. We don’t know when it will happen.
— And who will decide?
It is not clear yet. The number of Contracting, in my opinion, what exactly Kudrin, Chubais, Voloshin, some security forces, some regional leaders. They by long and difficult negotiations will decide who is suitable and who is not, and in the end will make the choice. Having made the decision, they will begin to search for artists.
An excellent discussion going on outside the public field. Somewhere, in some house or somewhere on the beach, sit 4-5 people and decide how to do it right. Another place to sit other 5 people. Then they intersect. All this is happening for months, and as a result they have an understanding emerges of how to act and how not.
— Let’s return from political conspiracy theories to economic specifics. The President promised us rapidly to raise the minimum wage (SMIC) to a living wage since may 1 this year. If the funds in the budget and this initiative will help to solve the problem of poverty in the country?
– Any economy produces a social product. The question is how to distribute it: how many business owners as something in the budget, how many officials, how many pensioners.
If the whole pie is shrinking, giving someone more, only due to the fact that there will be someone selected something. Someone has become a victim. If, for example, the government dispossessed elite privatization of the 1990s, pensioners will be able to allocate more money. If not, pensioners will receive less. What this will is written in the documents and how it will be unimportant and uninteresting.
All the talk about the minimum wage and a living wage — fiction. Rosstat, as he says, and thinks. He also believes economic growth on the background of decline, and also that pensions are rising — despite the fact that they fall.
— That is the population should not hope for the best?
It can hope all you want, but nothing will change. In the regional budgets to raise the minimum wage there is no money. The population will continue to Peter out. It is possible to disagree, but it is a fact. People need to survive will not live.
Advice from Mikhail Khazin: how to save for retirement
There are two ways pension savings. First: until you receive a salary every time you need to buy one gold coin. This will be your pension savings.
Second: if you are under forty years of age, it is necessary to bear children. And the more the better. Their challenge will be to grow and feed in our conditions, but then, when you become seniors, they will be able to contain you.