Aleksandr Lukashenko hears out report of Belarus PM Mikhail Myasnikovich

    The government should take measures to consolidate positive trends on the currency market, President of Belarus Aleksandr Lukashenko said as he met with Prime Minister Mikhail Myasnikovich on 15 October.

    Aleksandr Lukashenko said: “I am keeping an eye on the situation on the currency market as much as possible. I am certainly satisfied that it is past the turning point after all those political orgies and actions of our so-called opposition, who had been threatening the population via mass media and the Internet, generating some devaluation expectations. One can say that the situation went past the turning point a week ago and the National Bank has been buying foreign currency for the last three days. It heralds a stronger Belarusian ruble, it should be done”.

    “Our national currency should not be excessively strong in order to keep exports flowing but we shouldn’t make it artificially weaker to suit some political gains. Therefore, the National Bank pursues an absolutely right policy,” remarked the President.

    “We see that the businessmen are past the turning point, too. They are beginning to trade using the exchange rate of the National Bank and even less than that,” stated Aleksandr Lukashenko.

    “But I am not saying it to calm things down. If we have a success emerging in some area, then, militarily speaking, the success should be consolidated. We now have to put more efforts into export, reduce accounts receivable, sell more and stop all these talks about the scary global crisis,” stressed the head of state. “So far there is no crisis and we should penetrate the markets, which get vacated due to various reasons now, while keeping our present markets secure”.

    “We should just work in order to avoid things going the Kommunarka way. We have enough enterprises like that, where we lose money to benefit some incomprehensible investors, who either live in America or Russia or somewhere else,” remarked the President.

    Aleksandr Lukashenko said: “I want you to invite ministers in charge of material production and set performance goals for them strictly. Otherwise, all of them will be put in charge of managing bad loss-making companies just like Danchenko”.

    “Our using some macroeconomic efforts to stabilize the exchange rate is not a good idea. Material production is the key thing: you make goods, sell them, and earn money on foreign markets. Then the situation will be normal. In material production it is necessary to consolidate the positive tendencies, which are registered on the currency market. It is the key task of the National Bank and the government for now,” said the head of state.

    Mikhail Myasnikovich informed Aleksandr Lukashenko that the national economy operates well on the whole. In January-September 2012 the industry growth rate stood at 107.7%, with the growth rate in the agriculture at 105%. The currency market is now stabilized. “Expectations of some people regarding the fall of the Belarusian ruble have turned out to be invalid. Now the Belarusian ruble is getting stronger,” remarked the Prime Minister. “It is important that deposits of natural and legal persons in our banking system are rising. In the nine months the increase totaled Br31 trillion taking into account foreign currencies. Of the total Br21 trillion is deposits of individuals”.

    The development of the regions was touched upon at the meeting. Mikhail Myasnikovich said: “We believe that the practice of backbone districts in oblasts has been justified. It is now necessary to advance all the districts in each oblast to the level of the backbone districts taking into account differentiated approaches”. He underlined that it is necessary to vigorously develop all the districts of the country for the sake of achieving the targeted goals, including in agriculture. “It is necessary to revive the base of the districts, which are somewhere in the shade. Undoubtedly, a lot of money is poured there, too, but the payback is low”.

    The President also approved turning the education system more towards practical things. The entire chain, including lyceums, colleges, the university, the research part and manufacturing enterprises, should be concentrated within the framework of one legal person. The head of state pointed out the need to pay closer attention to contract-based education and employment for university and vocational school graduates starting with the new academic year, particularly personnel for the real economy. “The prestige of the labor of engineers, manufacturing engineers has been lost to some extent. It is wrong. If we talk about the scientific and technological advance, innovation-driven development, then the real sector should get rather well-trained workforce. Their adaptation should start as early as the secondary school,” remarked Mikhail Myasnikovich.

    The meeting also touched upon matters regarding the fulfillment of the President’s instruction to assign government officials to take care of problem enterprises. It was pointed out that a strict state control was required to enable the development and transparency of financial schemes at enterprises with a large non-state share. Aleksandr Lukashenko criticized the government for poor performance regarding the material production sector. He demanded that all the processes should be transparent and understandable while privatization and the reformation of ownership relations go on.