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Opinions & Interviews

3 Jun 2019

Belarus interested in Slovak expertise in local self-governance

Belarus interested in Slovak expertise in local self-governance

MINSK, 3 June (BelTA) – Belarus would like to study Slovakia’s expertise and knowledge in self-governance, Chairman of the Council of the Republic Mikhail Myasnikovich told reporters after he met with a Slovak parliamentary delegation led by Speaker of the National Council of the Slovak Republic Andrej Danko on 3 June, BelTA has learned.

Mikhail Myasnikovich noted that Belarus is currently considering a possibility to introduce amendments and addenda to the Constitution. In this regard, the topic of self-governance is coming to the forefront, he said.

“Naturally, we were interested in matters related to local self-governance. We are working on this in line with the instructions of the head of state. Slovakia’s experience is invaluable to us when it comes to the distribution of powers between the center and regions,” Mikhail Myasnikovich said.

Andrej Danko noted that Slovakia indeed made substantial progress in this field. At the same time, some issues remain, in particular, in education and healthcare.

The parties also discussed the operation of industry giants in today’s economic setting and the way to utilize their intellectual and industrial capacities as efficiently as possible.

Mikhail Myasnikovich noted that a well-developed legal framework is highly instrumental for promoting Belarus-Slovakia cooperation. At the same time he believes that it should be expanded, in particular, in the matters that are of biggest interest to the youth: science, education, information and communication technology, culture and sport. Moreover, a youth parliament is emerging in Belarus; therefore it would be great to think of joint events for fledgling politicians from the two countries.

The Slovak delegation visited the State Museum of the Great Patriotic War History and the National Library. Andrej Danko expressed admiration for Belarus’ attitude to its history and traditional values. He also praised the quality of Belarusian food, in particular, dairy products that he tried.

The parties emphasized the importance and relevance of the visit of such a high-profile parliamentary delegation. This visit is believed to give an impetus to joint programs and projects and to strengthen trust between the two countries.

In 2018 the trade between Belarus and Slovakia amounted to $217.9 million. Belarus had a foreign trade surplus of $10.1 million. In January-March 2019 the trade totaled $54.5 million, up 18.5% year-on-year.

Belarus is home to 11 joint ventures and 7 foreign companies with Slovak capital.


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