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6 Jun 2019

Belarus, Canada discuss investment cooperation

Belarus, Canada discuss investment cooperation

MINSK, 6 June (BelTA) – Belarus and Canada are interested in expanding investment cooperation and forging new business contacts. The matter was discussed at the meeting of Vice Chairperson of the Council of the Republic Marianna Shchetkina with Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Canada to Poland with concurrent accreditation in Belarus Leslie Scanlon, BelTA learned from the press service of the upper house of the Belarusian parliament.

During the meeting, the parties discussed inter-parliamentary cooperation, trade and economic partnerships and humanitarian contacts, with a focus on cooperation between the business communities of the two countries. “It is important to tell Canadian companies more about Belarus and investment opportunities in the country. This would facilitate cooperation and help launch joint projects,” the ambassador said.

Marianna Shchetkina emphasized that Belarus is interested in attracting big foreign investors, including those from Canada. Belarus has undertaken strong measures to promote entrepreneurship. “We are creating comfortable conditions for investors and we believe that business contacts between Belarus and Canada need a serious boost. The Belarusian parliament is ready to step in,” she said.

Other topics on the agenda included cooperation in environmental conservation and protection of forests, organic farming, information and communication technology and tourism. Humanitarian contacts were also in focus. According to the vice-speaker, Belarus highly appreciates Canada’s help following the Chernobyl disaster. “Canada was among the first to lend a helping hand. We appreciate it,” Marianna Shchetkina said.

Being the National Coordinator for SDGs, she informed the ambassador about Belarus’ efforts to achieve the SDGs and about the National Sustainable Development Strategy till 2035 that is in the works now.

The parties pointed to the special role of interparliamentary cooperation in strengthening bilateral contacts. “We need to make the most of the potential of the parliamentary friendship groups. This tool is not used efficiently enough yet,” Marianna Shchetkina noted.

The trade between Belarus and Canada was below $50 million in 2018 posting a sharp decline compared with the previous year. Belarus received $6.9 million of Canadian investment, including $4.9 million of direct investment.

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