10 Dec 2020 19:40

Russian economy in unstable equilibrium for past month, to start growing if epidemic eases - dep minister

MOSCOW. Dec 10 (Interfax) - The latest figures point to some decline in the Russian economy in last couple of weeks and the situation for the past month is one of unstable equilibrium, Deputy Economic Development Minister Polina Kryuchkova said during an online conference organized by the Central Bank.

She said consumer demand had recovered to pre-crisis levels, but "there has been some decline, and with unstable dynamics for a couple of weeks."

"That is, we can't say where we'll go from here - up or down. There's this very, very unstable equilibrium. Of course we are first and foremost hostages to the epidemiological situation - in this case the economy is following the epidemiology," she said.

"We became frozen in an unstable equilibrium. When we look at haulage, plus we have rail freight loading we are seeing fluctuations around zero - it has been falling slightly or rising slightly for a whole month. We have the feeling that the economy has stalled in expectation of something, either good or bad," she said.

"The situation is probably stabilizing and there will be some growth. At least that's what I'd very much like to believe, but once again the main problems are epidemiological ones," Kryuchkova said, commenting on a question by the moderator as to what direction the economy will move in from this unstable equilibrium.