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Opinions & Interviews

14 May 2018

Belarus’ ambassador on trade with Tajikistan, Belarusian furniture in Rahmon’s residence

Belarus’ ambassador on trade with Tajikistan, Belarusian furniture in Rahmon’s residence

DUSHANBE, 14 May (BelTA) – Belarus’ Ambassador to Tajikistan Oleg Ivanov met with the media to speak about Belarus’ trade with Tajikistan and how the two countries managed to increase it considerably over a relatively short period of time, BelTA has learned.

“A simple step I made when I came here was to develop direct relations with trading partners. The statistics showed that there were no Belarusian medications or cosmetics in Azerbaijan, while these products were widely on offer. It turned out that 90% of Belarusian products were imported from Russia and the rest from Lithuania. The mediators used not quite transparent schemes. We removed all these shadow schemes and the trade went up by 40%,” said the diplomat.

In his words, the next step was to develop business ties, including with the companies from Belarusian regions. “Dairy products are our number one brand. The logistics of deliveries to Tajikistan are complicated. Earlier, only Minsk and oblast centers supplied dairy products to Tajikistan. Today, we have district centers, which provided us with an additional 25%,” Oleg Ivanov said.

“We travel around advertising Belarusian goods saying that these are not only dairy products and tractors. These may be optical devices, which can be useful, especially in mountainous terrain or Belarusian furniture, which can be found, for example, in the residence of Tajikistan President Emomali Rahmon. It has become fashionable among rich people in Tajikistan to furnish their homes with Belarusian furniture, the ambassador noted.

In 2017 the trade between Belarus and Tajikistan made up $42.9 million, up more than two times over 2016. the growth continues in 2018. In January-March 2018 the bilateral trade rose by 47%;d Belarus’ export to Tajikistan skyrocketed by 60% over the same period in 2017. Oleg Ivanov explained that such impressive figures can be partially attributed to a setback in 2015-2016 when the trade with the CIS countries dropped. However, great contributors to the trade growth were the agreements reached by the two presidents and efforts invested by the business community and diplomats. For example, direct supplies were organized, some logistics issues were removed, and modern schemes of contract financing were employed. The MTZ assembly plant was opened at the Agrotechservice company in the city of Hisor in 2017. Over 15 Belarusian companies developed their own commodity distribution entities in Tajikistan. Among them are such companies as BelAZ, MTZ, MAZ, Amkodor, Gomselmash, and Bobruiskagromash.

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