Russia will lend USD600m to Belarus for refinancing earlier loans, Russian FinMin Anton Siluanov has announced. Belarus last year asked Russia for USD1bn to refinance debt, but FinMin Maksim Yermolovich said in February that USD600m was expected. Siluanov also said that Belarus met conditions for the last USD200m tranche of the Eurasian stabilization and development fund’s loan, so Belarus was likely to receive it by the end of April. It will be used to finance the budget deficit, said Siluanov.
The USD2bn stabilization loan was approved by the fund in 2015. Belarusian FinMin Maksim Yermolovich said last week that there’s been potential demand for new Belarusian Eurobonds, and that the government could increase borrowing at home if necessary, beyond the USD370m target for this year. Belarus meanwhile has continued to heavily rely on Russian and, to a lesser extent, Chinese loans.