Akindinova Natalya, Yasin Evgeniy
The article discusses the current stage of economic development in Russia. In particular, the authors analyze the problems caused by both the inefficiencies accumulated during the previous years, and the deterioration of the external conditions in 2014. They also stress the factors that can support and prevent the restructuring of the Russian economy and its further growth. In conclusion they list economic policy scenarios appropriate for the new situation.
The article deals with the peculiarities of the current stage of China’s economic development. Economic growth has slowed down in recent years because of weakening of all its drivers, e.g. domestic consumption and investment demand as well as exports. China’s entry into ‘new normal’ is caused both by structural and macroeconomic factors. The former include an exhaustion of labor surplus in traditional agriculture, waning of “demographic dividend”, rebalancing towards services in industrial structure, and diminishing returns of economic resources used. But all of these are aggravated with the chronic overcapacity and huge debts of the corporate and public sectors, not least because of the expanding shadow banking. Economic growth cannot be reaccelerated with a new flooding of cheap finance, and responding to new challenges the authorities have put forward a new program of institutional reforms in 2013-2014. Risks of а hard landing do exist, but, by and large, China is equipped with a good potential to cope with the negative trends and sustain a course of steady development.
Using previously unknown long-run statistical time-series on industry, agri-culture, railroad transportation and residential construction, we have denoted periods of growth and contraction in the Russian economy and revealed the economic factors of all changes in the trajectory. Periods of contractions during the era of the planned economy have been of special interest for us. Even now, many think that economic recessions generated for economic reasons are impossible in the planned economy. We have checked this idea against the long-run statistical data for Russia and found that cycling does occur, not only in market, but in planned economies as well (of course, with a significant remark that crises in planned economies are much rarer but possibly more destructive). The drops in total economic activity were caused partly by internal economic reasons (1945-1946, 1979, 1989-1991, 1992-1996), partly by external shocks (1941-1942, 1998, 2008-2009) and partly by the decisions and actions of national authorities (1933). The latter factor was very important for the Russian economic trajectory during the whole 20th century.
The article presents the results of the first representative study of ethical consumption in Russia. The level and profiles of ethical consumption, as well as the main types of ethical consumers have been identified. Factors affecting the partition of individuals into the different types of consumers have been defined using the multinomial logit regression. On this basis, the paper draws implications on the potential and the conditions of expansion of ethical consumption in Russia.
Shagaida Natalya, Uzun Vasiliy
The article is focused on the problem of monitoring and evaluation of food security. The necessity of changing the existing Russian approaches is proved, a system of indicators and methods of their calculation are proposed, calculations of integral index of food independence are developed, economic access to the food for the population with different income levels is estimated. Regions with threats of social instability associated with limited economic access to food for a large part of the population are revealed.
The article studies import substitution potential in a new geopolitical situation for the four most “import-intensive” industries that are characterized with the highest volume of import and negative foreign trade balance: agri-food sector, mechanical engineering, chemicals, transportation services and traveling. Prospects, preconditions and threats for import substitution of certain foodstuffs, tractors, rail cars, trucks, passenger cars, civil aircraft, plastics, tires, transportation services and traveling are analyzed. The import substitution process will be accompanied by diversification of industrial production. Potential reducing of the burden on primary exports due to contraction of imports in certain market niches and filling them with domestic manufacturing goods is assessed.
The paper critically analyses the idea of “secular stagnation” actively discussed in the recent economic literature. It examines the most popular versions of this idea offered by T. Cowen, R. Gordon and L. Summers. Key arguments include, respectively, the exhaustion of the main sources of economic growth, the emergence of new impediments to growth, and the output gap that cannot be reduced by traditional macroeconomic policy measures. The author concludes that in the next decades a slowdown of economic growth in the U.S. is highly probable although it can hardly be characterized as “stagnation”.