THE FISCAL GAP: AN ESTIMATE FOR RUSSIA
The fiscal gap is an indicator of the long-term balance of public finance and is calculated based on the intertemporal government budget constraint, which links government tax revenues and expenditures over long intervals. The estimate of the fiscal gap for the Russian general government has been determined according to three scenarios with varying assumptions regarding demographic trends, productivity growth rates, oil and gas prices and the quantity of extractable reserves. The calculations show that the current fiscal policy cannot provide for the stability of public finance in the long run. The main factors of budget imbalances are the growth of pension and health care expenditures caused by demographic trends and the gradual decline in tax receipts from the oil and gas sector.