Aleksandr Lukashenko hears out report on new format of Dazhynki harvest festival

    The national harvest festival Dazhynki will get a new format. The decision was made by Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko on 10 March.

    The Belarusian leader noted that Dazhynki is a useful event, because it helps put to order small and big towns. The festival benefits people in many ways. This is why it is so important. “However, let us be frank: the current format of the festival is far from being perfect,” the President believes.

    Aleksandr Lukashenko noted that the festival was originally meant to review the results of the agricultural year; however, at the start of the autumn (the time when the festival is held) it is too early to talk about results because many crops, like sugar beet and corn, are still to be harvested. “In fact we can take stock only of cereal crops harvest. This is wrong,” the head of state said. He emphasized that the focus should be made on efficiency of sales, profits and money on the accounts rather than gross output and yield. “This information is available only when the year is over,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

    The President believes that the governors show some signs of welfare mentality when it comes to choosing the venue for the festival. The President noted that the governors seek to get the right to conduct the festival only because they will get funds from the central budget to put in order the festival host town. The head of state noted that infrastructure improvement in the towns that host the festival is a good thing and it should be preserved.

    Aleksandr Lukashenko suggested honoring agricultural workers in the Palace of Independence at the start of a calendar year. The festival can be coupled with ceremonies to present state awards.

    As far as the location of Dazhynki is concerned, the festival will be held in one of agrotowns of every district. According to the President, this way they will be set in order within 10-12 years. “Thus, agrotowns will get a new lease on life. We will be able to conclude the program we have started,” the head of state said.

    On the regional level the festival will be held in district capitals (with exception of big towns and the towns that have already hosted the festival), which will give an addition impetus to the efforts to beautify these communities.

    A decision was made to revise the nominations of the Dazhynki competition. The nomination related to the harvesting of cereal and leguminous crops will be removed. Vice Premier Mikhail Rusy noted that the competition should focus on economic and financial performance of agricultural companies, districts and regions. The financial and economic results are available only when the year is over.

    There will be a new nomination among harvester operators involved in harvesting cereal and leguminous crops. The winners of the nationwide agricultural family contest Lord of the Countryside will also be honored.

    Thus, the festival will turn into the honoring of workers who have made the biggest contribution to harvesting cereal and leguminous crops, Mikhail Rusy said. He emphasized that Dazhynki has become a brand of Belarus and the festival should not be abolished.