Belarus and China agreed to intensify cooperation and promote interaction in new avenues. This is the result of the talks of Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko and China President Xi Jinping in Beijing on 16 May.
The Belarusian President stressed that he was glad to meet with Xi Jinping. Every meeting with the Chinese President is special, and this one was no exception. It was also special because it took place in the year the two countries celebrated 25 years of diplomatic relations. “You are a true friend of Belarus. I believe there is no person in Belarus who knew nothing about our relations, prospects, and about you as the President of this great country,” the President noted.
The heads of state shared their impressions of the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation which has been already widely discussed worldwide. “This is a great step of yours and the most important thing is that you have attracted more than 100 countries. We are proud that we are the first in Europe and one of the first states in the world who have not just supported the Belt and Road idea but launched the implementation of this large-scale project in Belarus,” Alexander Lukashenko said.
The head of state said that he had discussed the forum with representatives of many countries. “What was the most powerful and brightest is your greeting speech was. We will analyze it at home. This is valuable knowledge for any head of state. It was a far-reaching and concrete speech. I am not saying it just for a complement. It is not only my opinion,” he stressed.
The Belarusian President also praised an interesting format of the event and its scale, an eventful program for its participants and an opportunity to hold bilateral talks. “No one has wasted time here,” he said.
The talks focused on current projects and prospects for new initiatives, enhancement of cooperation in various fields.
The Belarusian-Chinese cooperation is not limited to economic and investment areas only. Belarus fully supports China’s determination to promote international peace. “The cooperation between our states in the security area, military and special forces field testifies to the fact. A joint working group to combat color revolutions and international terrorism, internal separatism and religious extremism will add a new impetus to cooperation in these sectors,” Alexander Lukashenko said.
Belarus also shows interest in further expansion of military and technical cooperation, including the implementation of projects on the modernization of the multiple-launch rocket system Polonez, the development of cutting-edge weapons, military hardware and other export-oriented military and double-purpose products.
The State Secretariat of the Security Council of Belarus and the Ministry of Public Security of China are gearing up to sign new agreements to promote closer contacts in the areas such as investigative and expert activities and the coordinated migration policy.
“Our cooperation in the security area demonstrates to the full extent the level of trustworthy comprehensive strategic partnership and mutually beneficial cooperation between the two states,” the Belarusian leader stressed.
There are new opportunities for expanding cooperation in tourism. For example, the countries are considering the possibility of introducing 30-day visa-free entry on a mutual basis. The heads of state have instructed the competent bodies of the two countries to consider the issue.
The operation of the Chinese-Belarusian Industrial Park Great Stone was in the spotlight at the meeting of Alexander Lukashenko and Xi Jinping. The President said that he had signed a decree before the visit to create new attractive conditions for the residents of the park. The sides agreed that it is essential to continue attracting new companies to the park and creating comfortable conditions for their work.
The parties also discussed cooperation in investment, credit and finance. China will consider the ways of allocating money to Belarus to complete the modernization of the country’s oil refineries. These projects are technically challenging. The necessary technologies are mainly owned by European and American companies. The successful implementation of such projects largely depends on the availability of untied funds. Specialists name $1 billion as the necessary amount of funds for the implementation of the projects.
Xi Jinping noted that Belarus and China have made great headway in bilateral cooperation and the two states always reach a consensus on the most important matters. “I am confident in a great future for our relations,” he said.
At the end of the meeting the parties signed an intergovernmental agreement on technical and economic aid to support Belarus’ social housing construction projects. The talks between the two leaders also resulted in an intergovernmental agreement on international cargo transportation and cooperation in the implementation of the Silk Road Economic Belt project.