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1 Apr 2020

Specialists comment on import supplies to Belarus amid pandemic

Specialists comment on import supplies to Belarus amid pandemic
Mikhail Zhigalo

MINSK, 1 April (BelTA) – Specialists commented on the situation with import supplies to Belarus during a regular meeting of the Expert Community project “Light Industry of Belarus: Challenges and Risks” in BelTA’s press center on 1 April.

Import supplies continue, although there are logistics failures due to the COVID-19 pandemic, head of the trade and public catering department at the Ministry of Antimonopoly Regulation and Trade (MART) Mikhail Zhigalo said.

MART is monitoring the trade flow. “There are certain disruptions in the supply, which, in our opinion, is also due to objective factors. We cannot say that there is no raw material at all or it does not come the country. There are objective logistics failures, delivery delays, but in general, goods as part of the wholesale chain continue coming to the country,” Mikhail Zhigalo said.

European countries have suspended shipments of raw materials, said Ivan Turchak, Director General of the Baranovichi Cotton Production Association (Blakit). Other delays occur due to quarantine measures at the border. Upon arrival in Turkey, for example, a trucker goes into two-week quarantine. “If earlier raw materials from Central Asia came within 7-10 days, today it takes at least a month. This is an additional challenge in terms of basic raw materials supply,” he said. The company is preparing for certain difficulties, which it will try to minimize as much as possible.

A detailed analysis of the trade flow through the Belarusian border has not been conducted yet. It is still difficult to say how trade has been affected by the measures imposed by the neighboring countries due to the coronavirus pandemic.

According to Andrei Shashkov, deputy head of the main customs control department of the State Customs Committee of Belarus, the borders have been shut down for the movement of individuals, not truckers. He stressed that the Belarusian customs is doing everything possible under these conditions. Trucks with medical goods are cleared as a matter of priority.

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