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Opinions & Interviews

4 Sep 2018

EU shows readiness for wider cooperation with Belarus

EU shows readiness for wider cooperation with Belarus

MINSK, 4 September (BelTA) – The European Union shows readiness for opening more doors to Belarus, Minister of Foreign Affairs Vladimir Makei said in an interview with Belarus 1 TV channel on 4 September, BelTA informs.

“The European Union shows a certain degree of readiness to open more doors to Belarus, which is manifested in our cooperation, for example, with European financial institutions. We are interested in developing trade and economic cooperation with the EU, because it is our second biggest trade and economic partner. We simply must have normal relations with it,” the minister said.

“We must understand that today the EU does not take any discriminatory measures against Belarus. It pursues the same policy as with other similar countries, except for those with which it has preferential agreements. Our task is to actively promote our products to the European market. For this, we need to address the issue of product certification, work more actively in specific countries. Our business entities, regions must take more active steps in the European markets,” said Vladimir Makei.

He stressed that at the same time Belarus still feels certain political nuances when it comes to trade and economic cooperation. “I think that we will finally agree on signing the Partnership Priorities [through to 2020]. When we worked on the document at initial stages, we saw that some states tried to hinder the process connecting it to human rights or some underlying political agenda. For us, of course, this was unacceptable,” Vladimir Makei said.

“The president outlined our approaches once again. There are national interests, and we should take them in account first. If the EU is ready to make more headway in certain sectors, we are also ready to take the appropriate steps to meet the union halfway. We, however, will never give up on our principles and go on a leash of some countries that try to put pressure on Belarus,” the minister added.

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