Russian Industrialists called the best exchange rate

Optimal for Russian industry, the national currency is 52 rubles/$. More just a strong ruble is in need of pharmaceuticals, the cheap ruble is beneficial to metallurgists

Held in March, the survey of the Gaidar Institute among the heads of Russian industrial companies showed that companies consider the best course 52 RUB/USD. A year ago this figure was almost on the same level: the enterprises surveyed on the initiative of the Central Bank in may 2016, called the optimal rate of 51 rubles/dollar. Almost the same figures two years talking about the established coordinate system for those engaged in production and marketing, concluded the experts. In this case the optimal data rate of the ruble sectors differ markedly from each other.

From all sectors of the domestic industry in a strong ruble at the level of 42 rubles/$. — need pharmacy. This area is like no other dependent on imported raw materials (substances) and equipment in the absence of equivalent in Russia. In contrast to the pharmaceutical industry are metallurgical enterprises, for them, the optimal rate of the national currency — 61 RUB/USD. because of the opportunity to export their products. Similar result -59 RUB/USD. — was called and the chemical industry, the industry also has export potential and has successfully implemented the investment program in the pre-crisis years, say the experts of the Gaidar Institute.

Import substitution will not solve all problems

A single point of view on the optimal rate of the Russian currency has demonstrated unexpected light and food industry — 48-49 rubles. per dollar. Traditionally, these sectors had a diametrically opposite attitude to the course because of the different degree of import competition, the experts of the Gaidar Institute.

Food industry in Russia over the last twenty years had minimal competition from producers from far abroad, unlike the enterprises of light industry. In 2014, food manufacturers received another gift in the form of the sanctions ban on the import of food from countries of Western Europe. As a result, over the past two years, competition in the Russian food market has fallen to virtually zero. However, the food industry is significantly dependent on imported equipment and materials, which also increases its interest in a strong ruble. A strengthening currency, according to sociologists, not only will reduce costs for businesses and prices, but also revive the demand for products due to income growth of the population.

Light industry, on the contrary, have always experienced intense competition from imports. The share of the import-competing markets in the industry in 2011-2013 reached 80% and dropped in 2015-2016 only to 73%, the report noted. In 2015-2017 were pleased with the demand for their products, only a third of the enterprises of light industry. However, contrary to logic, light industry, too, called for a strong ruble, follows from the survey.

By the beginning of 2017, the devaluation effect in 2014 was practically exhausted, according to experts of the Institute of comprehensive strategic research (ICSI). According to the report “the Exchange rate and the situation in the Russian economy,” at present, the index of real effective ruble exchange rate is at the level of October 2014. This suggests that the ruble is overvalued rather than undervalued currency. Compared with its historical average value for the period from 1994 to 2017 index of real effective ruble exchange rate can be considered overvalued by at least 12%.

According to experts, ICSI, Russian producers benefit from a weak ruble. This will give them a temporary capacity for modernization and increase of degree of processing of raw materials, to be able to integrate into the global chains at a higher level. In addition, the report notes, this will expand export opportunities and reduce imports in General, increasing the competitiveness of Russian products on the domestic market. As a result, growth companies in capital-intensive industries will increase and the purchase of imported equipment to modernize and increase production efficiency.

For industrial enterprises of optimum would be the stabilization of the ruble at the level of 60-65 rubles per dollar., said in March the Deputy Minister of industry and trade of the Russian Federation Vasily Osmakov. In this course, he explained, companies are able to carry out the investment program, and in the long term, “neprokleennye ruble” will provide the basis for projects in the field of import, including localization of manufacturing in Russia.

Critical dependence on import

According to the researchers, such a “wrong” attitude of the industry to the national currency can be only one explanation: light industry is critically dependent on imported equipment, materials and raw materials. Consequently, the weakening of the ruble will lead to higher prices in light industry, reduce investments and, consequently, the quality of manufactured products in total with falling demand in the domestic market.

“Sooner or later everything comes down to equipment. To live only on their raw materials means to produce uncompetitive products, because the costs will only increase. In a global sense, the project import, we failed, you can’t just fall out of the global economy,” — said the expert of the Institute of industrial management, Ranepa Oleg Filippov.

According to the expert, there will always be industries that are more profitable or that the ruble, but now the economy will be more profitable the Golden mean. “The rise and fall will increase the risk, turbulence introduces instability into the economy. I don’t see any locomotives industries could rise in a short time, unless the defence industry, and because of the state order,” — said Filippov.

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