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31 Oct 2018

Lukashenko invites European elite, business to expand contacts with Belarus

Lukashenko invites European elite, business to expand contacts with Belarus

MINSK, 31 October (BelTA) – European elite and business should consider closer ties with Belarus in all the areas, Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko said at the opening of the Munich Security Conference Core Group Meeting in Minsk on 31 October, BelTA has learned.

“We want the European Union to become one of the pillars of Belarus’ foreign trade, comparable with Russia and the Eurasian Economic Union. Robust credit and investment cooperation, assistance with the ongoing upgrade of our manufacturing and agricultural industries – this is what we need to strengthen our sovereignty and independence,” the head of state said.

He noted that Belarus ensures reliable, uninterrupted transit of energy. More than 100 million tonnes of various cargoes go through Belarus. “We have never created problems for Western partners, and we never will,” said Alexander Lukashenko.

He drew attention to big barriers in trade with the European Union. “Economy is the cornerstone of security. Economic and social problems breed instability,” the president said.

Belarus has been doing a lot for the EU in the field of security, has put up an effective barrier against illegal migration. “A mouse cannot get to you through our borders. If you treated us with more respect, we would make sure a fly will not get through,” Alexander Lukashenko put it figuratively. “More so, we protect you from migrant flows at our own expense,” he added. The president noted that Belarus also actively counteracts drug trafficking, crime, prevents movement of radioactive materials across the border, among other things.

“We do not seek membership in the European Union and we do not beg anything. We always have something to offer to partners,” Alexander Lukashenko said.

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