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Sunday, March 18, 2018

Political trends on the economic podium

Where politics and where is the fashion? Next.

Fashion is changeable and at the same time in its own cyclical. Once more, if not all of what was in the Soviet Union, it was fashionable to count the “scoop” and put on this point. It was easier to get used to a new life. Although, without a doubt, in Soviet history many heroic pages of the great achievements. In April 2005 Vladimir Putin described the collapse of the Soviet Union “the greatest geopolitical catastrophe” of the twentieth century. Political fashion has become quickly unfold. It is fashionable to condemn “liberals” or rather, everything goes back to the beginning of the formation of the new Russian state, to the revolutionary transformations that have occurred in our country in the early 1990s. Now what happened then, if fashionable to acknowledge a revolution, the only “color” that is a conspiracy against the Soviet Union, of course, inspired by the CIA. Maidan, one word.

Such a wave of fashion typical. People who lived in the Soviet Union, remember that there is always the case when political jokes ceased to qualify as a crime, it was fashionable sharp wyszukiwanie authorities, then there was a deliberate and increasingly systematic criticism of this grew the famous “sixties generation”, many of the brightest representatives of which last fashion raised to the pedestal of the masters of doom, and the current reduces to “national traitors”.

In Russia it is fashionable to live with an unpredictable past.

To underestimate the political fashion does not follow. Fashion — force is quite material. Especially now that it’s powered by a geopolitical crisis, in which Russia’s relations with Western countries.

Political fashion presented in different fashion shows. I choose economic policy.

Russia is actively and not only at the level of experts there is an ongoing discussion about whether it is necessary to change the economic policy. The Duma elections it only warmed up.

This is a long-standing debate. If you do not delve into the history, today it is the answer to the question: should we continue to do the main bet on the fight with the budget deficit and inflation or should not rely on the coming rise of investment, particularly private, who can not wait to implement the first large-scale investment projects using state funds and state-owned companies now?

Those who are in the Russian public opinion considered liberals do not believe in the effectiveness of public investment, considering that they lead away from the main traffic to consistently market economy. Besides investments from the point of view of “liberal” is every time a new Pandora’s box with the Hydra of corruption and inefficient use of resources.

At the other extreme, supporters of a radical break-up of the current economic model and replacing it openly state emission approaching mobilization. At the forefront of Sergei Glazyev and largely based on his economic views Boris Titov, whose concept is different from glazewski more modest scale of the proposed issue and attempt (chance of success which, however, a bit) to avoid the inevitably concomitant with this choice of tightening of administrative regulation of the foreign exchange market, banking sector, investment process, procurement. There are those whose position is more moderate, as, for example, Andrei Klepach, it encourages the state to take a more active investment stance and to move away from the fetish of reducing the budget deficit.

Supporters of the “breakthrough” economic policies, which they opposed to the “accounting” logic, which supposedly guided by the financial block of the government, has been active since the early 2000s, they relied on the support of Vladislav Surkov when he was the Kremlin’s chief ideologist. But they have not reached their goals in a completely different situation of the Federal budget.

What are the results of the confrontation between “statists” and “liberals”? The ones in favor of political fashion, the other hopelessly went out of fashion. This has been reflected in sharply increased the degree of confrontation. Typical example: when was the last time the opponents faced in public — and it happened at the recent Sochi investment forum, where Alexei Kudrin resisted Boris Titov and Andrei Klepach, even from television pictures it was evident that the conflict of the professional has become outgrown in the personal. The commentators on the channel where the forum was broadcast live, noted that at the time of presentation Titov Kudrin never left your smartphone, strongly demonstrating the lack of attention to what was said the ex-Minister of Finance.

And what about the economy itself? She remains in the position “okolonolya” (by the way, you call the play, the authorship of which is attributed to Vladislav Surkov, but it is not about the economy). But GDP still rises from negative values to zero faster than previously estimated. The overall trend of the next global economic forecast, October 4, presented by the IMF. About Russia it is said: in 2016, the economic decline will continue, but not at 1.8% in April and 0.8%. And then — the beginning of the growth.

Make a Subtotal of the balance of power between “liberals” and “statists”. On the side of the first the fact that the acute phase of the economic crisis has passed, “statists” in this sense is late, but on their side of the political fashion. And its an integral part of the dominant ideology.

Goal: to go by, taking a fundamental political decision on the future of economic policy?

There is a famous Chinese experience, Chinese reformers managed with great success to combine in the economy of the state and the market. How did they succeed?

Deng Xiaoping did not invent anything. He was able to realize in China that began in Soviet Russia as the New economic policy. In the USSR, it was discontinued, and subsequent attempts, such as the Kosygin reform, and failed to catch up. China as its New economic policy implemented. First, because the geopolitical goods, which stifled the Soviet Union, was incompatible with the Chinese. Secondly, and almost equally important, because Deng Xiaoping managed to bring reforms from the pressure of ideological Inquisition. His simple phrase: “No matter what color the cat; it is important that it catches mice” — the key to the success of reforms.

Appeal to the Chinese experience — a hint. If it’s not about ideology, not liberalism and historical traditions of statism, and the result is, in principle, possible to destroy the wall between the camps of politicians from the economy. They with this task can not cope, but the President it on the shoulder.

What exactly is it? Of course, not that Kudrin hand in hand with Glazyev wrote the programme. They are definitely not the Ilf and Petrov. But compromise is, ironically, possible. Common ground offers even the IMF. One of his recommendations, October 4, addressed to Russia, is that the Central Bank should continue to ease monetary policy to move the economy from recession to growth. To tighten monetary policy should not and when the upgrade will resume, according to the Fund.

More visible outlines of a compromise were suggested Kudrin in Sochi, just at the moment when Titov he was basically ignored. The compromise is this: offered traffic from two directions. Priority by institutional reforms — strengthening the independence of the court, including the release of personnel of arms of the presidential administration, which actively influences the formation of the higher echelons of the judiciary. Priority from the investment heat-up recovery — implementation with the key role of public investment infrastructure projects.

Note: the public investment can be treated differently, but foolish to ignore that the Russian economy gosudarstven at least 60%. I will remind, Alexey Ulyukaev at the time offered 100% of the funds of the national welfare Fund to put on investments in infrastructure projects. The choice is clear: better infrastructure will attract new investment, including private, the private owners of these projects will not undertake due to issues with cost recovery.

And an independent court, whose impartiality I trusted all the participants in the process, and is in the interests of all citizens of Russia.

All would be a great offer double progress, if not one “but”. It is the severity of the budget problems and hot lobbying fight around the priorities of budget expenditures, in which the main struggle is unfolding between social and military expenditure and all the costs that relate to support the economy, go under the knife. Money for major infrastructure projects remains.

If public investment is to find it fail, we are in front of broken tub. Or — emission and redistribution of the economy’s glazewski, possibly with amendments in titovskiy. And almost unsolvable problem of building a future with his head, turned to the past, that sooner or later will lead to change of political fashion. Or continue to bet on financial stability, with a very slow recovery. And the continued pressure of political fashion.


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