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12 Oct 2018

Belarus president talks about importance of regional cooperation with Russia

Belarus president talks about importance of regional cooperation with Russia

MOGILEV, 12 October (BelTA) – It is in the regions of Belarus and Russia where multiple manufacturing chains begin to result in joint products. Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko made the statement during the plenary session of the fifth Forum of Regions of Belarus and Russia in Mogilev on 12 October, BelTA has learned.

Alexander Lukashenko said: “Virtually every Belarusian product, including tractors, trucks, or cars or household appliances, contains a Russian component. At present over 8,000 Belarusian and Russian enterprises are connected by manufacturing cooperation. In Belarus there are about 3,000 organizations with Russian charter capital. In Russia there are roughly 50 joint assembly enterprises and about 160 distribution chain entities with Belarusian capital. I am talking about hundreds of thousands of jobs, which is quite an accomplishment these days.”

The fact that Belarusian and Russian delegations visit each other’s country all the time indicates the mutual interest in advancing interregional ties, noted Alexander Lukashenko. Some 80 cooperation agreements have been signed with 36 constituent territories of the Russian Federation. Belarus’ main trade partners are Moscow and Saint Petersburg, the republics of Tatarstan and Bashkortostan, Perm Territory, Bryansk Oblast, Kaluga Oblast, Moscow Oblast, Smolensk Oblast, and Tyumen Oblast. Trade with these regions makes up over 70% of Belarus-Russia trade.

“It is a great result but it is important to establish the same level of cooperation with other territories of the Russian Federation, too. I believe we have all the necessary instruments for it. Working groups and business cooperation councils have been established with nearly 60 regions of Russia. In Belarus Russian partners can directly contact central government and municipal government officials to resolve emerging issues,” said the head of state.

Alexander Lukashenko noted that the heads of Russian regions, who were present during the event, would be able to confirm his words. “I don’t think any of them will take offense with me because when a Russian region governor arrives in Belarus, he or she always meets with the Belarus president. We analyze problems in relations between Belarus and that specific region and concrete measures are taken right away,” stressed the president.

In his words, the Forum of Regions of Belarus and Russia has become a good tradition for the two heads of state, for the heads of regions, for representatives of the private sector, and experts. The forum has become a venue for discussing key matters of interstate relations.

“We’ve attentively studied how our common plans in social policy, agribusiness, and manufacturing sector are implemented at the municipal level. We’ve been made familiar with promising avenues of development of high technologies, innovations, and information society. Today we have to analyze and determine the spheres where interregional cooperation could have additional positive influence on integration processes within the framework of our union,” added the Belarusian leader.

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