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Opinions & Interviews

1 Mar 2019

China described as reliable and supportive partner for Belarus

China described as reliable and supportive partner for Belarus

MINSK, 1 March (BelTA) – China is a reliable partner who is always ready to lend a shoulder to Belarus, President Alexander Lukashenko said as he met with community leaders, experts, Belarusian and foreign media on 1 March, BelTA has learned.

The head of state remarked that this support is mutual. He also spoke about the development of the economic and investment cooperation between the two states. He thanked the Chinese side. “All issues which I brought to the leadership of China were solved,” Alexander Lukashenko remarked.

As an example, he cited the situation when problems with the delivery of products to Russia emerged. “When Xi Jinping came for a visit, Belarusians remember that, he tried our products and I asked if he liked them. He sincerely answered that the products we very good, of high quality. As a sincere Belarusian I said that it is necessary to help us with the market. China purchases a huge amount of foodstuffs. Besides, there is railway transportation between China and Western Europe via Belarus. It is a real gift for us – trains do not travel empty on the way back if we use them to transport our products, first of all, farm produce, to the Chinese market,” the president remarked.

After that Chinese specialists visited Belarusian enterprises, got familiar with their work, necessary certificates for the delivery of products to China were obtained. “And we got an opportunity to export dairy products, then beef and poultry. And we have partners with whom we can work directly delivering products to shops. This is good money, and we do not lose anything here, and helped our trade sector reach the formula that I always demanded,” the head of state continued. He emphasized the need to diversify the export of products to foreign markets. The president added that some time ago Belarus was strongly dependent on the Russian market, now we have a formula of an export oriented country (30x30x30) thanks to China and other countries.

He also spoke about the investment cooperation with China who built power stations, including the one near Vitebsk, in Belarus. The Chinese side also helped Belarus modernize many combined heat and power plants, enterprises, including a cellulose factory in Svetlogorsk. “Thanks to China, there is no cellulose dependence. In many other aspects too, I am not even speaking about missile weapons Polonez which was created not in cooperation with Russia but with the People’s Republic of China thanks to Xi Jinping who issued a loan to us with, we can say, a zero interest rate. Together with Chinese specialists we launched the production of Polonez systems. Our specialists are currently working on a new-generation missile, and the basis was a Chinese one. Even in smaller things, such as army vehicles, humanitarian aid, housing construction, we received a grant exceeding $200 million. Now we are mulling over the projects to build a stadium and a swimming pool with a Chinese flavor. The Chinese are working out a turn-key construction project, which will become a true present for the Belarusian nation,” the head of state said.

Addressing the representatives of the Chinese side, Alexander Lukashenko remarked: “You should know that Belarusians will not be in your debt. You are a reliable partner who has always supported us. We will treat your country the same way. We are your friends.”

Many years ago, when Alexander Lukashenko was an MP, he emphasized the need to study China’s experience. He reiterated this in the first year as president during his visit to China. The Belarusian-Chinese have been gradually developing. “China is never in a hurry, they are studying people very carefully. And they made sure that they can trust Belarusians. And we always feel China’s support and help in all international issues. Therefore, we have and will have the same attitude to you,” he said.

The president also spoke about cooperation in railway transportation, including in modernization, given that Chinese products are transported to Europe via Belarus.

Alexander Lukashenko concluded that Belarus will continue supporting China when necessary and also counts on China’s support.

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