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First Deputy Prime Minister Andrei Belousov took part in the opening ceremony of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum – 2021.

Andrey Belousov named the main challenge facing the world economy today.

“The main challenge is dramatic structural changes, the extent of which we cannot yet assess. The inflationary wave that hit the world economy quite unexpectedly. In the United States, inflation is unprecedentedly high – more than 4.5%, in industry – almost 10%, which has not been observed for a long time by one of the world’s leading economies. An inflationary wave begins in Europe. We see more than 2% where there used to be zero. Most likely, these are signs not only of a weakening of monetary policy, but also of structural changes that appear as a result of a sharp weakening of contacts between people, a decrease in the cross-border flow of goods, capital, and labor. Structural changes are a challenge that we will have to look at most closely, make decisions, because behind it there is an increase in inequality, different access of countries, different groups of society to the benefits of civilization and technologies, ”said Andrei Belousov.

The Deputy Prime Minister also answered the question of the session’s moderator, CNBC TV presenter Headley Gamble, about the impact of sanctions on the Russian economy and about Russia’s pivot to the East.

“In recent decades, we have proclaimed a multi-vector foreign policy. We have no question of turning to the East, since we have always been turned to the East. The double-headed eagle – the coat of arms of the Russian Federation – is a symbol that did not appear today, not yesterday, or even the day before yesterday. The US sanctions have done some damage, but they have generated two trends. First, we have created safety margins in all the most important areas of the Russian economy. This applies to industry, agriculture, where we have almost completely switched to self-sufficiency. Second, we have drastically reduced our external debt. This is about corporate debt. The country’s dependence on external debt is now about two times lower than in 2014. We have a situation where gold and foreign exchange reserves exceed the country’s total external debt. We have great confidence, so there is a lot of interest in us. It is no coincidence that the American delegation at the forum is the second largest after the delegation of the State of Qatar. This is an indicator, ”Andrei Belousov emphasized.

The event was attended by Felix Chisekedi, President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, World Bank President David Malpass, Minister of Trade and Industry, Acting Minister of Finance of the State of Qatar, His Excellency Ali bin Ahmed al-Kuwari, Prime Minister of the Republic of Rwanda Eduard Ngirente, Politburo member, Secretary of the Central committee, head of the department of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Vietnam on economic issues Tran Tuan Anh. Governor of St. Petersburg Alexander Beglov greeted the guests and participants of the forum.

St. Petersburg International Economic Forum – 2021 takes place on June 2-5 in St. Petersburg. The main theme this year is “Together again. Economics of the New Reality ”.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and or sentence structure not be perfect.

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