Belarus' gross international reserves (GIR) rose to $7.1bn as of November 1, 2018, if calculated in accordance with methods of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), according to preliminary data from the National Bank of the Republic of Belarus, reports BelTA.
In October 2018, the country's gold and foreign currency reserves went up by $181.3mn, or 2.6%, following a fall in September of $320mn (4.4%).
Reserves were bolstered in October by budget revenues, including export duties on oil and oil products, the tranche of the loan from the Eurasian Fund for Stabilisation and Development, revenues from selling government bonds denominated in foreign currency by the central bank and the finance ministry, and the purchase of foreign currency by the National Bank via the Belarusian Currency Stock Exchange. Reserves were also strengthened by an increase in the cost of the monetary gold.
The National Bank and the government honoured foreign and domestic obligations in foreign currency in the amount of about $290mn in October 2018.
According to the country's main monetary guidelines for 2018 the volume of international reserve assets, taking into account the honouring of domestic and foreign commitments in foreign currency, should be at least $6bn by January 1, 2019.
The government has undertaken to use the relatively benign external conditions to pay down debt. Following several rounds of financing this year from Eurobond issues and Russian and Chinese loans the ministry of finance has already put in place most of the funding it needs to cover it obligations through to the end of the first half of next year. The government earlier said that it intends to refinance three quarters of its obligation, using any surpluses from foreign trade to pay down debt.