Lessons of the global financial crisis: FBK

Two years after the collapse of Lehman Brothers triggered the global financial crisis, Business RT spoke with Igor Nikolaev, Partner and Director of Strategic Analysis at FBK, about what Russia has learned.

RT: What lessons has Russia taken from the crisis?

“Russia has learnt almost nothing from the crisis, meanwhile most of the rest of the world has managed to understand that it was a speculative economic model that created the crisis. Everybody there understood that economic bubbles do necessarily burst one day and in the U. S., for example, the Government has taken a real step and adopted a new law about financial regulations.”

RT: Can you estimate the damage the crisis brought about in Russia?

“If we look at our GDP, we’ll see that in 2009 it was down 8%, which compares to a 6-7% economic growth earlier. The difference equals 14%, and this very figure really matters. For Russia’s economy, with GDP standing at 39 trillion roubles, the loss is estimated at about 6 trillion roubles, which is a huge sum of money.”

RT: Do you think, we’ll see the 2nd wave of the crisis?

“I think, in Russia the 2nd wave of the crisis has already started. The only question here is terminology, as waves can be different. Today, when people hear about a crisis, they start thinking about the same processes as took place in 2008. But today the pace of economic recovery is clearly going down in Russia, which I would indicated as the 2nd wave of the crisis.”

RT: What does Russia need to do to cope with the crisis?

 “The first thing Russia needs to do is to make a plain and clear analysis of the reasons, which the country hasn’t done yet. This, I think, is the first obstacle on Russia’s way out of the crisis.”

RT: How soon can Russia come out of the crisis?

“I don’t expect a quick complete recovery in Russia, as today stagnation is being coupled with inflation. So, I think, Russia will need another 3-4 years to fully cope with the crisis.”