IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Efficiency Cost of Fiscal Equalization: The Case of Belarus



Belarus is the last command economy left standing in Europe. Because it still has an option of a gradual transition ("Chinese style'"), the study of Belarus’ case can present insights on the counterfactual to the "shock therapy" approach undertaken by the rest of the Central and Eastern European countries. However, the viability of the existing system hinges on its ability to weather short-term external economic shocks and to adjust to a significant list of medium term structural challenges. Now that more than half of Belarus’ consolidated public expenditures, excluding social security, takes place at the subnational levels of government, its ability to adjust largely hinges on the incentives that the system of intergovernmental relations presents to subnational officials. Belarus' experience with the recent recurrent macro-economic turmoil suggests that the incentives embedded in the system of intergovernmental fiscal transfers might hinder its ability to undergo fiscal adjustment and consolidation. Thus, since 2008, Belarus underwent one of the largest contractions in the size of government in the region, with public expenditures contracting by 12.9 percentage points of GDP and finally dropping to 37 percent of GDP at the end of 2011 (Figure 1).

Suggested Citation

  • Sebastian Eckardt & Jorge Martinez-Vazquez & Andrey Timofeev, 2014. "Efficiency Cost of Fiscal Equalization: The Case of Belarus," International Center for Public Policy Working Paper Series, at AYSPS, GSU paper1401, International Center for Public Policy, Andrew Young School of Policy Studies, Georgia State University.
  • Handle: RePEc:ays:ispwps:paper1401

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Timofeev Andrey, 2002. "Fiscal Decentralization and Soft Budget Constraints," EERC Working Paper Series 01-12e, EERC Research Network, Russia and CIS.
    2. World Bank, 2013. "Belarus Public Expenditure Review : Enhancing Public Services in Times of Austerity," World Bank Other Operational Studies 13209, The World Bank.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ays:ispwps:paper1401. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Paul Benson). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.