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Opinions & Interviews

13 Apr 2017

Belarus interested in good neighborly relations with EU

Belarus interested in good neighborly relations with EU

MINSK, 13 April (BelTA) – Belarus is interested in developing good neighborly relations with the European Union, Belarus’ First Vice Premier Vasily Matyushevsky said as he met with Finland’s Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Kai Mykkanen on 13 April, BelTA has learned.

“This year Belarus and Finland are marking 25 years of diplomatic relations. Over the period the two states have reached considerable progress in the development of their relations. We are grateful to Finland for its consistent stance in the European Union in what concerns the efforts to normalize the relations between the EU and Belarus. We would like to reaffirm our interest in building up stable good neighborly relations with the European Union,” noted Vasily Matyushevsky.

Belarus interested in good neighborly relations with EUIn his words, the implementation of the current trade and economic potential is of great significance for Belarus from a perspective of attracting investment and expanding the use of Finland’s modern technologies. “Unfortunately, the volume of Belarus-Finland trade is not big at present. In 2016 the mutual trade reached almost $101 million. As we see it, the current situation can satisfy neither Belarus nor Finland. Today we have every possibility to restore the trade we had in 2012. We are doing all the best for it,” the first vice premier added.

Belarus is interested in developing cooperation with Finland in a number of areas. These are biotechnologies, forest management, woodworking, eco-fuel production, agriculture, scientific and technological cooperation, environmental protection and other areas. “We are ready to provide all necessary conditions for the successful implementation of big business projects in Belarus with the participation of Finnish companies,” Vasily Matyushevsky stressed.

Belarus interested in good neighborly relations with EUEnergy can become one of the key areas of cooperation between the two countries. “Keeping in mind the planned commissioning of the first unit of the Belarusian nuclear power plant, interaction in the area looks promising for the two states,” the first vice premier said. He cited as an example the possible construction of reserve power sources at gas turbine plants. Finland might be interested in the project.

“I am ready to exchange opinions on every possible area of economic and foreign political cooperation,” Vasily Matyushevsky said.

The Finnish minister for foreign trade and development is paying the first visit in the history of the Belarusian-Finnish relations on 12-13 April 2017.

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