After the demise of the Reserve Fund of the government remained to rasterbate national welfare

Russia’s reserve Fund has died. On the eve of the Ministry of Finance announced its complete nullification. More such Institute in the Russian financial system does not exist. Gone into oblivion the Fund only a month did not reach its tenth anniversary.

photo: pixabay.com

The final day in the life of the Reserve Fund was December 22, 2017, when it took account of the last 54 billion. They, like all the previous billions and trillions that filled this state “jug”, was spent on financing the budget deficit.

“The departed” came to light in February 2008 as a result of division of the Stabilization Fund, which receives a windfall from high oil prices. On the ruins of the stabilization Fund created two new sovereign funds, the Reserve intended to Finance the budget deficit in the case of a sharp fall in Treasury income and the national wealth Fund (NWF), which was initially supposed to provide pensions for future generations, but then it was used for anti-crisis assistance to banks and financing large-scale infrastructure projects.

First Reserve Fund acted as a “big brother”, because his accounts were about 3 trillion roubles and the national welfare Fund – less than a trillion. But gradually their role changed because of the different functions: the first was something like a government store for a “rainy day”, and the second is a kind of financial source for development.

Who could have imagined then, in early 2008, when the country’s GDP grew steadily and the price of a barrel was close to 130 dollars what’s ahead the national economy for nearly a solid “rainy day”. The country had experienced two of the strongest economic crisis (2008-2010 and 2014-2016), caused, in particular, the collapse in oil prices.

Each of these crises inflicted on the Russian economy in General and budget in particular the strongest blow. And that these attacks were not for the truly catastrophic, the great merit of the deceased provident Fund: it is thanks to his reserves in the first and in the second case, managed to patch the hole and make ends meet in the Federal budget, keeping afloat its design. As a result, the government even in the most difficult times fulfilled its social obligations, leaving state employees without salaries, without pensions, elderly, and poor without benefits.

The first crisis Reserve Fund, subsist from 5 trillion to 775 billion roubles, yet somehow survived. Then the economy seems to be beginning to revive, and the oil again shot up over $100, and by the middle of 2014 “the jug” filled with crazy petrodollars to the eyeballs, reaching 5.9 trillion. rubles. But then boomed the second crisis, caused not only a collapse of oil, but Western sanctions. The reserve Fund again heroically took the hit, saving scarce budget from collapse. However, to survive this blow to our hero was not meant to be.

In fact, his inevitable end in 2016 confidently predicted, Finance Minister Anton Siluanov. And even the exact date of “death” was known in advance — because in late December the Ministry of Finance traditionally make payments to repay the budget deficit. And the hole in the budget in 2017, though was less than planned, but alas, was more than the amount that was kept in the Reserve Fund. So his fate was sealed.

The bright memory of the hero who defended us from the fatal effects of the crisis! And, of course, deserves a good “godfather” of the deceased — ex-Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin, who at first insisted on its creation, and then, in between the crises, protected from all sorts of influential lobbyists are unhappy that the government there are a lot of money that they can’t put the usual “cut”.

And now to the forefront once the “younger brother” – the national welfare Fund, which has long been in fact became a senior, and now all remains the only one. While the Reserve Fund without the rest spent themselves to save budget, the national welfare Fund is more or less calm teetered on the turn in 4 trillion roubles. Of course, in the relatively prosperous period 2011-2013 lobbyists-activists and was eager to squander, but came a new crisis. And in the middle of last year the decision was made to merge the two funds, which are now United under the cap Fund. However, from the Reserve Fund to merge has nothing — even the name is not useful.

But now to Finance the budget deficit from the NWF: he passes the “potbelly for a rainy day”, which is currently a 3.75 trillion. If the “dark days” for our economy will continue or will come again, in the furnace of the next crisis will have the trillions. How long they are in this case enough?

Recall that at the beginning of the crisis in 2014 the Reserve Fund was lying significantly higher at 5.9 trillion. They burned for only three years. However, the current “godfather” the only remaining sovereign Fund, Anton Siluanov — swears that with the new budget rule and the NWF would not squander, but on the contrary, will be updated, but to be honest, believe in it with difficulty.

Too telling the story of “big brother” and too sad was his end. Whatever is said now high-ranking officials, changing the signs of the sovereign Fund seems symbolic: its reserves the government has already razderbanit, now takes on the razderbanivaniem national welfare.

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