Belarus will continue to persistently develop relations with Georgia, Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko said as he met with Prime Minister of Georgia Mamuka Bakhtadze on 23 August.
“Belarus maintains very close cooperation with all post-Soviet republics. We do not divide them into the good and the bad. I think, even if there are any drawbacks and problems in cooperation, they can be handled in a calm and patient manner. This is what we are doing with certain post-Soviet states. In this regard you can count on us, we will develop our relations in a persistent and patient manner (although this period is already behind) in the best interests of the Belarusian and Georgian peoples,” Aleksandr Lukashenko stressed.
The President remarked that he had always cited Belarus-Georgia cooperation as an example although the countries have a small trade turnover. In 2018, the Belarusian-Georgian trade made up $87.1 million, the trade in services reached $26.1 million. “Some time ago we started from zero and could not imagine how we could trade with Georgia due to the issues with the Russian Federation and other things. However, in a few years’ time we learned how to trade, and we see prospects,” the head of state said.
He also mentioned especially friendly relations between Belarusian and Georgian people. “Georgians close people, many of them live in Belarus. Georgian festivals which are held on the Belarusian soil are well known in every small village,” Aleksandr Lukashenko added.
According to Mamuka Bakhtadze, he often visited Belarus when he worked in the private sector and as the head of Georgian Railways. Therefore, he knows that Belarusians and Georgians have very warm relations.
“You have mentioned our trade turnover. Indeed, we have started from zero. But I am convinced that we can double it. Our intergovernmental commission is very efficient. I would like to emphasize that your first visit to Georgia in 2015 gave a huge impetus to the development of our relations. And, of course, I want to thank Belarusian people and you personally for the ultimate support of our territorial integrity and sovereignty. Georgian people will never forget that,” the prime minister said.
Aleksandr Lukashenko remarked that this is a principled position of Belarus in relation to any country. “Things can happen with any state, and it is inadmissible,” he stressed.