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Opinions & Interviews

20 Feb 2017

Belgian business ready to help Belarusian entrepreneurs enter new markets

MINSK, 20 February (BelTA) – Belgian business is ready to help Belarusian entrepreneurs with entering new markets, Etienne Vauthier, Belexia co-founder, told BelTA.

“When we compare Belarus with neighboring countries, we see that Belarusian enterprises are more ready to export to new markets, including the European Union’s common market. But not everyone has enough experience in sales. Belgian companies have a vast experience and can help enterprises from Belarus properly build up sales strategies and enter new markets by joint efforts,” he said.

Etienne Vauthier stressed that Belarus has an advantageous position for export to the EU. “This includes both the geographical location and the production capabilities. But one of the problems is the absence of certificates. Even those enterprises that make high-quality products do not have basic documents for entering the European market. Our work is aimed to help solve this problem,” he explained.

He said that European consumers still know little about Belarusian enterprises. “The aim is to encourage the companies that visit Belarus to spread more information in the EU about Belarusian companies, their capacities, and the potential demand for their products on the European and other markets,” Etienne Vauthier emphasized.

He stressed that some Belarusian companies need to improve approaches to export promotion. “Some lack instant response. Sometimes, it takes a lot of time to get a price list, to confirm a meeting. This is not a common practice, but there are some cases,” Etienne Vauthier said.

He added that Belarus’ five-day visa-free policy will contribute to the revitalization of the business dialogue. “It is also necessary to promote the country itself. The people coming here need to know where to go and what to do, with whom to meet and cooperate. Belarus has a high industrial potential. It has everything for its products to be selling well on foreign markets. Some adjustments are needed to get integrated into the global sales system,” Etienne Vauthier said.

The joint Belarusian-Belgian export-import agency Belexia was officially registered in Brussels on 25 August 2015. Its co-founding partners are the National Center for Marketing and Price Study of the Belarusian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, with the support of the Economy Research Institute of the Belarusian Ministry of Economy, and the Belgian company TSE Agency, with the support of the Wallonia Foreign Trade and Investment Agency (AWEX), Belfius Bank, and Belgium’s largest construction company Besix. Belexia promotes Belarusian exports to Belgium, other EU member states, and third countries. It also attracts foreign investment to Belarus and to the Eurasian Economic Union as a whole.

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