Aleksandr Lukashenko hears out report from Vice Prime Minister Piotr Prokopovich

    Matters concerning the complex modernization of the Belarus economy were high on agenda as Vice Premier of Belarus Piotr Prokopovich delivered his report to President of Belarus Aleksandr Lukashenko on 12 August.

    Modernization is an important matter for Belarus because higher labor effectiveness can secure better living standards as well as a stable foreign trade surplus, stable foreign trade, and a better competitive ability of Belarusian products.

    This is why the Head of State constantly monitors complex modernization and holds the government answerable for progress in this area.
    The President was informed that, on the whole, positive steps were secured in this area in H1 2013. Modernization programs have been worked out and are in progress at 3,680 enterprises with a state share of property and at about 1,000 private enterprises. The process also covers the development of small and medium enterprises. Apart from that, the matter of launching new major production projects using foreign and Belarusian capital is being taken care of.

    Yet the Vice Premier stated with regret that the figures registered in H1 2013 were far from the annual targets. For instance, in H1 2013 earnings per employee rose by 11.5% from 2012 while the annual growth target is 25%. The enterprises lagging behind the curve include enterprises run by the Industry Ministry and the state petrochemical concern Belneftekhim.

    In H1 2013 fixed-capital investments amounted to 108.8% as against H1 2012. The figure is slightly above the target (106%), however, it is insufficient for reaching the goals set by the modernization program for all enterprises. According to Piotr Prokopovich, at present fewer than half of the enterprises stay on schedule.

    Piotr Prokopovich believes that additional incentives are needed to accomplish modernization goals.

    However, the Vice Premier noted, economic management modernization is what lags behind farthest. “No cutting-edge equipment and technologies will be effective if there is no management system, a system to motivate workers, enforce strict discipline and technologies. If we fail to do it, we will not be able to effectively use the resources we will pour into technical modernization,” said Piotr Prokopovich.

    He stressed that it is necessary to create an economic management system to ensure the competitive ability of Belarusian products, their conformance with the best world standards. “Unfortunately, today we lag behind in observing the technologies. The failure leads to our being uncompetitive in many areas,” said the Vice Premier.

    The Head of State gave instructions to take all the necessary measures to reach the goals set by the modernization program for the year 2013 in full. Among other things it will allow making some headway in modernization of the entire economy in 2014-2015. Piotr Prokopovich assured that the government will do their best to fulfill the instruction of the Belarus President.