A period of decay: the last Dec Union. 23 Dec 1991


Foreign exchange reserves of Russia

The Russian government has prepared a draft presidential decree on the formation of the Republican currency reserve. The document will revoke the rule on mandatory sale of 40% of foreign exchange earnings for companies in all sectors of economy except the fuel and energy complex.

Manufacturing firms will be obliged to sell to the state only 10% of foreign exchange earnings, with half of these funds will directly go to the Central Bank.

The “petrodollars” will be bought in Russia at a price below the market twice, and sent to the reserve currency Fund of the Republic, destined to service the external debt, the stabilization of the market rate of the ruble and import of medicines and food. Local authorities are permitted to “pinch off” up to 2% of foreign exchange earnings in reserve of the Republic, territory or region”, wrote “Izvestia”.

A poster on the wall of the house on the Arbat. 1991

Photo: Peter Dejong/AP

The document will enable businesses to freely enter the world markets: it canceled all restrictions on the export of products, with all tariffs to zero is proposed.

Access to world markets will be for Russian companies natural response to the economic situation in the country. According to government forecasts, inflation in the first two months in Russia will reach the level of 50-60%, which would make it disadvantageous to trade in goods within the country.

The future of the CIS

Representatives of the Russian government gave a press conference in which told about results of the meeting of the leaders of the independent republics in Alma-ATA.

The Newspaper “Izvestia”. 23 Dec 1991

The Future Of Gorbachev

The President of the USSR continues to prepare his farewell address to the nation, which is set to announce his departure from his de facto purely nominal, post.

“Yesterday evening on the phone M. S. [Gorbachev] was “hurting” your text handling-farewell. I, as could, his “ennobled” weakened place that could only call it irony or ridicule. He’s stubborn, and I was now awkward with him sharply to argue: think that insolent, because before him no longer the President. But he was not going today “to announce”, although “everything” can’t wait”. Anatoly Chernyaev, “the diary of the assistant to the President of the USSR.”

On the same day, Gorbachev met with Russian leader Boris Yeltsin and British Prime Minister John major. The head of the publishing house “news” Alexander eydman, Gorbachev proposed $1.5 million for the publication of his memoirs.

Meanwhile in the “news” appears note on the future of the Gorbachev Foundation, which in mid-1992, plans to lead the Soviet leader.

Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev. 1991

Photo: Vladimir Musaelyan/TASS

The foreign press

  • “While the economy plunges deeper into crisis, last of the mighty Soviet military-industrial complex can be in large trouble. According to some estimates, more than a million of the approximately seven million people employed in the industry may soon be on the street” (The New York Times).
  • Yeltsin facing a unique problem. Without private ownership and loans from the population maximum priority given to the recovery of the value of personal savings. This means the closest approach of the ruble to the US dollar for the course “one to one”. Western economists advising the government seem to believe that there is no other way but to take the course of “black market”, which now exceeds 150 rubles. per dollar. And only heard: “Inflation is already happening and cannot be reversed” (The Wall Street Journal).
  • “Of course, with Russia, Ukraine and nine other former Soviet republics created the Commonwealth of Independent States, with the transition to the free market, leading to layoffs and inflation, the old Soviet military-industrial complex has become a breeding ground for conservative resistance. This resistance feeds the fears of a coup and a new cold war, as some conservatives insist that defense companies should continue to produce modern weapons instead of toys” (The New York Times).

Other news of the day

  • In Tbilisi, armed clashes continued near the House of government: by noon on 23 December killed more than 20 people, injured about 60.
  • The Prime Minister of Yugoslavia Ante Markovic said his resignation was in protest against the future budget of the Federal Republic, 86% of which is the financing of the army.
  • The poll showed that 79% of Russians, 55% of inhabitants of Central Asia and 47% of Ukrainians believe that their governments will not be able to improve the financial situation of the population in the republics.
  • In Moscow hosted a presentation of the first Russian book of records: the participants guessed the suit of the card by smell, twisted nails and danced in the glowing suits.
  • The Estonian authorities stated that from 15 January everyone entering the country must obtain a visa. It will be issued directly at border crossings, its value is not yet defined.

Chronicle December 1991

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