nep-cis New Economics Papers
on Confederation of Independent States
Issue of 2021‒09‒20
nineteen papers chosen by

  1. [WTO Case Review Series No.37] Russia — Measures Affecting the Importation of Railway Equipment and Parts Thereof : Clarification of Framework for Applying TBT Article 5 (Japanese) By HEIKE Masahiro
  2. The Role Of CEO Characteristics In Firm Innovative Performance: A Comparative Analysis Of EU Countries And Russia By Fernanda Ricotta; Victoria Golikova; Boris Kuznetsov
  3. Помогают ли высокочастотные данные в прогнозировании российской инфляции? By Tretyakov, Dmitriy; Fokin, Nikita
  4. The housing market of Russian cities By Malginov Georgiy; Sternik Sergey
  5. Monetary Policy in in Russia in 2020 By Bozhechkova Alexandra; Trunin Pavel
  6. The industrial production dynamic in 2020 By Kaukin Andrey; Miller Evgenia; Turuntseva Marina
  7. Public property management in Russia in 2020 By Malginov Georgiy; Radygin Alexandr
  8. Russia’s Fiscal Policy in 2020 By Arlashkin Igor; Barbashova Natalia; Belev Sergey; Leonov Elisei; Deryugin Alexander; Sokolov Ilya; Tishchenko Tatiana
  9. The Russian Financial Market By Abramov Alexander; Chernova Maria; Radygin Alexandr
  10. Russia in key international institutions By Ignatov Aleksandr; Larionova Marina; Popova Irina; Sakharov Andrey; Shelepov Andrey
  11. Наукастинг темпов роста стоимостных объемов экспорта и импорта по товарным группам By Maiorova, Ksenia; Fokin, Nikita
  12. Small and medium business amid coronacrisis By Barinova Vera; Zemtsov Tsepan; Tsareva Yulia
  13. Incomes and the poverty line of the population By Grishina Elena; Lyashok Viktor; Makarentseva Alla; Maleva Tatiana; Mkrtchian Nikita; Florinskaya Yulia; Khasanova Ramilya; Burdyak Alexandra
  14. Trends in regulating online platforms worldwide: international experience By Girich Maria; Levashenko Antonina; Valamat-Zade A.; Magomedov Rustam
  15. [WTO Case Review Series No.36] Russia – Tariff Treatment of Certain Agricultural and Manufacturing Products (DS485): Moving Targets and Measures with Systematic Application (Japanese) By SHIMIZU Mari
  16. Fathers’ involvement in childcare, children’s education and housework during the COVID-19 lockdown By Mikhaylova, Oxana; Sivak, Elizaveta
  17. Technical change and the postwar slowdown in Soviet economic growth By Kukic, Leonard
  18. The Legacies of the Soviet Influence in the 1950s: China's 156 Major Industrial Projects By Jin, Zhangfeng
  19. The Prerequisites for Increasing the R&D Activity of Companies in Finland By Ali-Yrkkö, Jyrki; Halme, Kimmo; Deschryvere, Matthias; Lehenkari, Janne; Piirainen, Kalle; Suominen, Arho

  1. By: HEIKE Masahiro
    Abstract: This case is one of a series of WTO dispute settlement cases which relates to the political conflict between Russia and Ukraine. Ukraine claims that Russia's measures related to Conformity Assessment Procedures which restricted the acquisition of certifications required for sales in Russia and hindered the export of Ukrainian railway equipment to Russia are inconsistent with the WTO Agreement. The conformity assessment procedure is a procedure for demonstrating that a product conforms to technical regulations and standards. And, as confirmation through conformity assessment that products conform with technical regulations may be treated as a condition for importing and selling the product, the way the procedures are designed and conducted may have a significant impact on trade of goods. In fact, in some studies, about half of the "Specific Trade Concerns" (STCs) presented at the 2010-2014 TBT Committee were measures related to conformity assessment procedures. As Article 5 of the TBT Agreement, which regulates the conformity assessment procedure, has not been disputed in the WTO dispute resolution procedure, this case has important significance in that it shows the legal framework for applying this provision for the first time.
    Date: 2021–07
  2. By: Fernanda Ricotta (University of Calabria); Victoria Golikova (National Research University Higher School of Economics); Boris Kuznetsov (National Research University Higher School of Economics)
    Abstract: In this paper, we investigate whether CEO characteristics (owner-manager status, age and gender) influence firm innovative performance and test empirically if the effect differs for market and transition economies. We use cross-sectional data of manufacturing firms in six EU countries and in Russia. To address heterogeneity, we explore innovation performance by size among SMEs and large businesses and by Pavitt sector. In both institutional settings, the presence of a family CEO either has no effect or improves innovative performance. On the contrary, the role of CEO gender is different in Russia and in the EU. In the EU, female CEOs are associated with less innovation, especially in SMEs and in the traditional sector. In Russia, CEO gender is not associated with differences in innovative performance and when it is (for the traditional sector), it favors female-run firms. For CEO age, considering product innovations, the oldest group of CEOs are less active in European firms while mature CEOs are more innovative in Russia.
    Keywords: CEO age, gender, manager-owner status, innovation, manufacturing firms
    JEL: D21 L60 P50
    Date: 2021
  3. By: Tretyakov, Dmitriy; Fokin, Nikita
    Abstract: Due to the fact that at the end of 2014 the Central Bank made the transition to a new monetary policy regime for Russia - the inflation targeting regime, the problem of forecasting inflation rates became more relevant than ever. In the new monetary policy regime, it is important for the Bank of Russia to estimate the future inflation rate as quickly as possible in order to take measures to return inflation to the target level. In addition, for effective monetary policy, the households must trust the actions of monetary authorities and they must be aware of the future dynamics of inflation. Thus, to manage inflationary expectations of economic agents, the Central Bank should actively use the information channel, publish accurate forecasts of consumer price growth. The aim of this work is to build a model for nowcasting, as well as short-term forecasting of the rate of Russian inflation using high-frequency data. Using this type of data in models for forecasting is very promising, since this approach allows to use more information about the dynamics of macroeconomic indicators. The paper shows that using MIDAS model with weekly frequency series (RUB/USD exchange rate, the interbank rate MIACR, oil prices) has more accurate forecast of monthly inflation compared to several basic models, which only use low-frequency data.
    Keywords: инфляция; наукастинг; прогнозирование; высокочастотные данные; MIDAS модель
    JEL: E31 E37
    Date: 2020–08
  4. By: Malginov Georgiy (Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy); Sternik Sergey (Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy)
    Abstract: The past year in the Russian real estate market was unique. Some of the trends that emerged earlier have noticeably intensified (the decline in the developers’ profitability, the digitalization of technical and business processes, increase in size and consolidation of the industry as a response to the pre-bankruptcy state of a significant part of market participants, the expansion of state support for developers and its participation in the completion of many uncompleted projects). Other trends impact the spread of remote work format, migration from megacities, the systemic revival of the individual housing construction (IHC) segment as an alternative to apartment buildings, the easing of requirements for the level of income of borrowers and their reliability, the unprecedented expansion of state- subsidized mortgages - have only just begun to take shape.
    Keywords: Russian economy, residential property prices, housing market, housing construction
    JEL: K11 H82 L32 L33
    Date: 2021
  5. By: Bozhechkova Alexandra (Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy); Trunin Pavel (Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy)
    Abstract: In 2020, the world economy was faced with a large-scale crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic, a worsening situation in the global oil market, increasing global uncertainty, and capital outflows from emerging markets. The crisis phenomena were experienced, to a varying degree, by every sector of the economy and required the implementation of a set of urgent monetary policy measures. The Bank of Russia’s switchover to monetary policy easing became its key decision aimed at sustaining aggregate demand: in 2020, the regulator cut the key rate four times, from 6.25% per annum in February to 4.25% per annum in July, thus sinking it to its historic low.
    Keywords: Russian economy, monetary policy, money market, exchange rate, inflation, balance of payments
    JEL: E31 E43 E44 E51 E52 E58
    Date: 2021
  6. By: Kaukin Andrey (Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy); Miller Evgenia (RANEPA); Turuntseva Marina (Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy)
    Abstract: The imposition of the restrictive measures to contain the spread of the coronavirus infection (self-isolation regime, shutdown of public facilities, etc.) adversely affected the dynamic of Russian industrial sectors in H1 2020. The manufacturing industries that produce consumer durable goods, which sales most strongly depend on changes in the income of the population, suffered the most. The collapse of the OPEC+ deal and its subsequent renewal on tougher conditions for daily oil production adversely affected the extracting sector dynamic. The decomposition analysis has demonstrated that the Russian economic recession was relatively small, the ownership structure of major industrial enterprises, the weak integration of Russian industrial sectors into global value added chains and a significant share of industrial production in the economy played a positive role.
    Keywords: Russian economy, production, external and internal demand, GDP structure
    JEL: G28
    Date: 2021
  7. By: Malginov Georgiy (Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy); Radygin Alexandr (Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy)
    Abstract: From 2016 onwards, statistical data on public property entities have been published within the framework of the System of Public Property Management Efficiency Estimates. It was approved by Decree of the RF Government No. 72 dated January 29, 2015, and introduced to replace the public sector monitoring data that had been collected and released by the Federal State Statistics Service (Rosstat) since the early 2000s in accordance with the provisions stipulated in RF Government Decree No. 1 dated January 4, 1999 (as amended on December 30, 2002). Among other things, the System contains data on the number of federal state unitary enterprises (FSUEs) and joint-stock companies (JSCs) with RF stakes in their capital; previously, such data were usually published as part of government privatization programs (from 2011, for three-year period; and prior to 2011, for one-year period). In the current Forecast Plan (Program) of Federal Property Privatization and the Main Directions of Federal Property Privatization for 2020–2022, relevant data are available only as of early 2019. So, in order to adequately describe the processes observed over the course of the current year, one must rely specifically on data in the System of Public Property Management Efficiency Estimates.
    Keywords: Russian economy, public sector, privatization
    JEL: K11 H82 L32 L33 L38
    Date: 2021
  8. By: Arlashkin Igor (Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy); Barbashova Natalia (Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy); Belev Sergey (Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy); Leonov Elisei (Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy); Deryugin Alexander (Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy); Sokolov Ilya (Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy); Tishchenko Tatiana (Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy)
    Abstract: The budget system revenues of the Russian Federation in 2020 shrank by Rb3.4 trillion in real terms compared to the previous year, or by 8.6% at constant prices (Table 6) on the back of reduced oil and gas revenues. For this reason, the proportion of oil and gas revenues in the total budget revenues of the enlarged government declined in 2020 to 13.1% against 20.9% in 2019. For non-oil and gas revenues, there is a slight increase of Rb118.0 bn or by 0.4% in constant prices, which was achieved during the crisis on the back of the transfer to the federal budget of the Bank of Russia profit obtained from the sale of equity stake in Sberbank (reflected under other income). In the total revenue side of the expanded government’s budget, the federal budget revenues decreased to 49.4% in 2020, compared to 51.1% in 2019.
    Keywords: Russian economy, intergovernmental relations, fiscal policy, budget system, revenues, expenditures, Bank of Russia
    JEL: E62 H5 H61 H62 H68 H7 H72 H77
    Date: 2021
  9. By: Abramov Alexander (RANEPA); Chernova Maria (RANEPA); Radygin Alexandr (Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy)
    Abstract: In 2020, after the sudden financial shock in March caused by sales of risky assets by investors against the backdrop of the rising coronavirus pandemic, stock markets in many countries recovered faster than did the economic indicators. The traditional hypothesis that the value of financial assets depends more strongly on future investor expectations than on past events has been confirmed.
    Keywords: Russian economy, stock market, bond market, corporate bond market, derivatives market, private investors
    JEL: G01 G12 G18 G21 G24 G28 G32 G33
    Date: 2021
  10. By: Ignatov Aleksandr (RANEPA); Larionova Marina (RANEPA); Popova Irina (RANEPA); Sakharov Andrey (RANEPA); Shelepov Andrey (RANEPA)
    Abstract: The whole complex of pandemic, economic, and social crises has become a kind of a stress test for the system of multilateral cooperation as it is weakened by geopolitical conflicts, contradictions between the key members and growing mistrust due to stalled reforms of international organizations and their inability to cope with a host of global issues. Even prior to the pandemic outbreak, 2020 did not promise to be easy. Deepening inequality, deceleration of economic growth, acceleration of climate change, fiercer competition for digital technologies, and the fragmentation of cyberspace demanded joint efforts at the regional and global levels. The human toll, contraction of GDP by 5.2%, a 13% drop in trade, a 60% plunge in oil prices,4 and a loss of an equivalent of 495 mn of full time jobs5 have aggravated long-term challenges by simultaneously casting aside cooperation to overcome them. In this context, it was paramount to balance the urgent agenda and long-term objectives.
    Keywords: Russian economy, international organizations, international institutional arrangements
    JEL: F5 F53 F55
    Date: 2021
  11. By: Maiorova, Ksenia; Fokin, Nikita
    Abstract: In this paper we consider a set of machine learning and econometrics models, namely: Elastic Net, Random Forest, XGBoost and SSVS as applied to nowcasting a large dataset of USD volumes of Russian exports and imports by commodity group. We use lags of the volumes of export and import commodity groups, prices for some imported and exported goods and other variables, due to which the curse of dimensionality becomes quite acute. The models we use are very popular and have proven themselves well in forecasting in the presence of the curse of dimensionality, when the number of model parameters exceeds the number of observations. The best model is the weighted model of machine learning methods, which outperforms the ARIMA benchmark model in nowcasting the volume of both exports and imports. In the case of the largest commodities groups, we often get a significantly more accurate nowcasts then ARIMA model, according to the Diebold-Mariano test. In addition, nowcasts turns out to be quite close to the historical forecasts of the Bank of Russia, being constructed in similar conditions.
    Keywords: наукастинг; внешняя торговля; проклятие размерности; машинное обучение; российская экономика
    JEL: C52 C53 C55 F17
    Date: 2020–06
  12. By: Barinova Vera (Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy); Zemtsov Tsepan (Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy); Tsareva Yulia (Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy)
    Abstract: The unprecedented scale of the COVID-19 epidemic created harsh environment for operation of small and medium-sized businesses: decline in household incomes and demand, shutdown of foreign markets and uncertainty of the economic situation. The lockdown introduced in April 2020, resulted in temporary suspension of activities of many enterprises providing services: thus, for instance, trade, catering, hotels, repair shops, hairdressers, etc. Activity of small businesses reduced to the values observed during the crisis of 2015. According to our estimates, the crisis affected more than 75% of SMEs, although about 11% of enterprises and 5.5 million employees2 are concentrated in the most affected industries. In March-April 2020, revenues in some industries fell by more than 90%. There was a high likelihood of closing millions of businesses and reducing the number of people employed in the SME sector by several million
    Keywords: Russian economy, small businesses, medium-sized enterprises, OVID-19, lockdown
    JEL: C53 E37 L21 L52 I18 I19
    Date: 2021
  13. By: Grishina Elena (RANEPA); Lyashok Viktor (RANEPA); Makarentseva Alla (RANEPA); Maleva Tatiana (RANEPA); Mkrtchian Nikita (RANEPA); Florinskaya Yulia (RANEPA); Khasanova Ramilya (RANEPA); Burdyak Alexandra (RANEPA)
    Abstract: The reduction in real disposable cash income was due to the economic difficulties caused by the proliferation of the coronavirus infection The shutdown of a host of organizations in spring 2020 and the decline in consumer demand, in the first place for non-food products and services, reported in Q2-4 2020 (retail sales turnover came to 84.0, 98.4 and 97.2%, respectively of the same period of 2019) resulted in the cut in household incomes. In 2020, the total value of cash incomes of the population went down by 3.0% in real terms against 2019, while the amount of remuneration of wages and salaries of employees decreased by merely 0.9% in real terms.
    Keywords: Russian economy, households, labor market, social sentiment, internal migration, long-term migration, external labor migration
    JEL: D14 J01 J61 J62 F22 J11
    Date: 2021
  14. By: Girich Maria (RANEPA); Levashenko Antonina (RANEPA); Valamat-Zade A. (RANEPA); Magomedov Rustam (RANEPA)
    Abstract: Online platforms play a key role in digital economy. They make a significant contribution to increasing productivity and development of innovations, facilitate the easing of foreign economic activity, create environment for social development by supporting new forms of employment, involving small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the economy. The OECD member countries, as well as the Organization’s partner countries (primarily China), strive to create conditions for the development of online platforms and ensure their competitiveness in global markets. Currently, the EU has adopted the most detailed regulation aimed, on the one hand, at creating conditions for developing digital platforms, and on the other, at protecting local consumers of goods and services provided by global digital platforms against misconduct. In order to improve the tools for protecting Russian users of the services provided by global online platforms, it is advisable to carefully analyze the EU experience in protecting the interests of consumers of digital platforms.
    Keywords: Russian economy, online platforms, digitalization, digital platforms
    JEL: O3 O31 O32 O33
    Date: 2021
  15. By: SHIMIZU Mari
    Abstract: The panel in this case found many tariff measures targeting agricultural and manufacturing goods by Russia to be inconsistent with GATT Article II:1(b) (adopted without appeal). While the measures at issue include a type of tariff that has combined duty for both bound duty and applied duty, which requires complicated comparisons between the two rates, the panel clarified that the break-even point of custom price at which the applied duty exceeds the bound duty (break-even price) can be identified without detailed mathematical explanations, but by demonstrating examples of inconsistency that indicate the structure or design of the measure. These findings by the panel are appropriate as they are in line with the findings in prior cases that have held that, in light of the nature of tariff concession that requires stability and predictability, the violation of concession can be established by demonstrating that applied duty rates can exceed the bound duty rates based on the structure and design of the measure. Also, as the measures in this case include measures amended or terminated after the establishment of the panel and during the trial (so called "moving target(s)"), the identification of such measures and whether to make recommendations for them are included in the major issues in this case. The panel took an analytical and reasonable approach in identifying the measures to be reviewed taking into account the complainant's consent and the logical relationship among the relevant phases of measure, and making recommendations with a reservation of "to the extent that [the relevant measures] continue to be inconsistent." Whether the similar approach will be taken in future cases remains to be seen. The panel further held that, to establish an independent compounded measure by which certain types of tariff treatments are systematically accorded, individual applications need to be underlined by a system, rather than just being repeated, while it also held that it may be possible to infer the existence of a system when the repetition is so substantial as to render it more likely than not that the underlying system exists (in conclusion, the panel did not find that the existence of a systematically applied measure had been established in the current case). However, it may be questioned whether establishing criteria that would allow for the easier inference of the existence (i.e., the shift of burden of proof) of such issues, solely on the basis of frequency of repetition, would be appropriate.
    Date: 2021–07
  16. By: Mikhaylova, Oxana; Sivak, Elizaveta
    Abstract: The COVID-19 pandemic has transformed daily life across the world and affected multiple social institutions. It may also have modified parents’ gendered division of labour. Current research on family functioning during the pandemic has provided mixed evidence on the influence of at-home work and at-home schooling on mothers’ and fathers’ involvement in childcare, child’s education and housework. In this paper, we use data from 1359 Russian mothers to study whether fathers' participation in these activities was influenced by the increased need for parental help in schooling and more opportunities for help due to remote work during the lockdown. We find that fathers’ involvement was higher if they worked remotely during the lockdown and if the child needed much additional help with schooling after school closures. These results hold true even after controlling for fathers’ pre-pandemic involvement. In line with conditional fatherhood theory, mothers’ engagement with remote schooling was almost unrelated to their employment status and work arrangement. Overall, our evidence supports the ‘needs exposure’ hypothesis that additional family needs in combination with switching to remote work can increase fathers’ involvement. However, evaluating the duration of these changes and their long-term influence on families’ functioning would require further research.
    Date: 2021–09–10
  17. By: Kukic, Leonard
    Abstract: The existing studies usually find that technical change was very important in constraining the economic growth of the Soviet Union. While these studies have been successful in quantifying the extent of technical change, they have been less successful in quantifying its nature. This paper probes the essence of technical change by analysing its direction and bias. I find that the Soviet Union achieved strong increases in labour efficiency until the 1960s. Although the labour efficiency growth subsequently slowed down, it is capital efficiency that drove the postwar slowdown in economic growth. I argue that labour shortages, combined with an inadequate investment policy, retarded the Soviet capital efficiency.
    Keywords: Soviet Union; Economic Growth; Technical Change; Economic History
    JEL: O47 O33 N14 P27
    Date: 2021–09–10
  18. By: Jin, Zhangfeng
    Abstract: This paper investigates whether and how China's adoption of Soviet-aided industrialization programs in the 1950s has affected its long-run innovation. Focusing on 156 major industrial projects aided by the Soviet Union, combined with an instrumental variable approach, I find that the adoption of these programs substantially discourages local firms to innovate in the long run. A causal mediation analysis of instrumental variable settings shows that the negative effect is entirely driven by local firms' lower intensity of incentive pay. This evidence suggests disadvantages of Soviet-aided industrialization programs for long-run innovation due to firms adopting incentive-incompatible management technology.
    Keywords: Soviet Aid,Technology Transfers,Incentive Pay,Innovation,China
    JEL: O10 O30 L20 M52
    Date: 2021
  19. By: Ali-Yrkkö, Jyrki; Halme, Kimmo; Deschryvere, Matthias; Lehenkari, Janne; Piirainen, Kalle; Suominen, Arho
    Abstract: Abstract This study focuses on factors affecting companies’ research and development (R&D), Finland as a location for R&D activities, and R&D intensity (R&D/GDP). According to our results, R&D investments are increasing in Finland but the R&D intensity will not reach 4 % target by 2030. Our results showed that Sweden, Estonia (and to some extent other Baltic countries), and Germany are Finland’s main competitors regarding the location of R&D investments. The key factors affecting R&D location are the availability of R&D personnel, and the geographical proximity to the companies’ other units and customers. We recommend comprehensive and long-term innovation policy which considers policy actions – not only affecting the increase of R&D and its impacts – but also the increase of capabilities. It should be noted, however, that rather than the ultimate target, R&D is a means to reach other goals.
    Keywords: R&D, Research, Development, Target, Location, Factors, Private, Company, Firm, Competition
    JEL: D22 D25 E22 F23 H25 O3 O32 O38
    Date: 2021–09–09

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