Aleksandr Lukashenko holds Security Council session to discuss Belarus’ socio-economic development

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President of the Republic of Belarus Aleksandr Lukashenko urged to ensure quality growth of the domestic economy and higher living standards of the population. The Belarusian head of state made the statement at the session of the Security Council to discuss problem issues of Belarus’ social and economic development on 17 June.

“In order to dismiss speculations I will say that taking into account certain positive first-quarter trends we decided to hear out a government’s report on the economic performance in the first half the year at an extended meeting,” the President said at the beginning of the session.

At the same time, the head of state remarked that it is too early to talk about substantial improvements. In January-April 2014 the GDP of the country increased by slightly more than one percent. “However, too little time has passed to draw any final conclusions. After all, this growth came on the back of retail and wholesale trade, transportation and construction. As you know, we have completed a series of large-scale modernization projects in power engineering. Thus, the GDP growth is attributed mainly to domestic demand,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

“Nevertheless, some chronic issues in the manufacturing industry and agriculture remained. These sectors are experiencing production decline, increase in the backlog of inventory, deteriorating financial situation and so on. These issues have been raised many times and we need to come to grips with them,” the Belarusian leader stressed.

“Now we need a correct assessment of the situation, so that we will focus on the priority areas, ensure quality economic growth and improve the well-being of our people,” the head of state believes.

According to the President, it was one of the reasons why Belarus decided to take part in the establishment of the Eurasian Economic Union. “The main thing here is the clear terms on gas supply. In fact, we keep today’s prices which are acceptable for us. We have also agreed on oil: we get the amount we can refine, plus $1.5 billion of export duties which we used to transfer to the Russian budget. Now this sum will stay inside the country,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

“The treaty sets out competition rules. We have set up the institutions and mechanisms which help us take the right decisions and secure control over their fulfillment. Now we need to build up our presence on the common market, not stay idle and lament about the toughened competition,” the President emphasized.

Addressing the participants of the session, Aleksandr Lukashenko ordered them to give answers to some big questions, in particular whether Belarus has passed the lowest point in the development trajectory that is followed by an economic revival and what should be done to prevent these issues from happening again. “We need to have a principled, critical and simply manly discussion of the most pressing issues we have to deal with in economy and social policy,” the head of state added.

At the end of the session the President gave relevant instructions.