Belarus and Ecuador need to take stock of their relations, Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko said as he met with Ecuador Minister of Foreign Affairs Maria Fernanda Espinosa Garces who is paying an official visit to Belarus on 17-19 May.
“There is a period in the Belarusian-Ecuadorian relations when we need to take stock of our relations, analyze our progress, maybe, stop some projects and determine an action plan for the near future,” the head of state said.
Alexander Lukashenko remarked that certain political reforms have been recently carried out in Ecuador, and they have not been completed yet. “I strongly hope that in this very important period, when working on this plan, you will also agree on top-level contacts with our minister. You should know that we are also happy to welcome your President in Belarus at any convenient time,” the Belarusian leader said.
The Belarusian-Ecuadorian relations and a corresponding roadmap should rely on the trade and economic cooperation. “I think we will focus on this in our plans. But agree that Belarus and Ecuador should not take obligations that we cannot fulfill. Therefore, we need to analyze our progress and previous plans,” the head of state said.
“However, we need comprehensive strategic plans for the future. We must do our best to diversify and raise our bilateral trade. The Belarusian-Ecuadorian friendship and partnership should rely on a solid foundation rather than on words. Therefore, I strongly hope for a real action plan for the future,” Alexander Lukashenko added.
The President stated that Belarus and Ecuador maintain good political relations. The countries have similar positions on the international agenda, efficiently cooperate in all international organizations, especially in the United Nations Organization. “We are ready to support your candidacy for the post of the President at the next session of the United Nations General Assembly,” the President said.
Alexander Lukashenko also remarked that any state, especially at a big geographical distance from its partners, is looking for the countries it can rely on in the cooperation with other countries of the region. “As a rule, these are the closest states. Ecuador is the closest state for Belarus in Latin America, and we are always trying to rely on Ecuador in the cooperation with other states,” he stressed.
Maria Fernanda Espinosa Garces, in turn, empathized the interest in developing relations with Belarus. The minister said that trade and economic cooperation plays an important role in the relations with Belarus. In her words, over the past few years the countries have made headway in the development of bilateral cooperation. “This is not enough however. We need to do much more through joint efforts,” said Maria Fernanda Espinosa Garces.
She noted that this is her second visit to Belarus. She paid the previous visit as the Defense Minister of Ecuador. Maria Fernanda Espinosa Garces conveyed greetings to Alexander Lukashenko from Ecuador President Lenin Moreno. “This year we are marking 25 years of diplomatic relations between Belarus and Ecuador. This period is a key moment in resetting the relations and giving them a new impetus,” the minister said.