Meeting with Chairman of Belarus’ Supreme Court Valentin Sukalo

    Plans have been made to make the economic crime law more humane in Belarus. The issue was on the agenda of the meeting between Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko and Chairman of Belarus’ Supreme Court Valentin Sukalo on 28 December.

    The head of state emphasized that it is quite possible to make the economic crime law and legal proceedings more humane. The President also focused on the procedures for corporate bankruptcy cases. They should include pretrial rehabilitation of an enterprise; local authorities should use all tools for that, Aleksandr Lukashenko believes. A case should be brought to court in extraordinary circumstances after all pretrial rehabilitation mechanisms have been used. The participants of the meeting noted that a lot of small criminal cases can be settled at the pretrial stage, and it is possible not to seize property in such cases.

    The President also inquired about the impact of the reform to integrate general jurisdiction courts and economic courts. He asked whether the Supreme Court was concerned about the results of this reform and wanted to know about the plans. Aleksandr Lukashenko remarked that this is the main issue which will be addressed again in the future.

    Valentin Sukalo told the head of state that the integration of general jurisdiction courts and economic courts was a success. It turned out that the right model of national justice has been chosen. Court action needs to be polished in the next five-year period. A corresponding program has been submitted to Aleksandr Lukashenko. It provides for the acceleration and facilitation of judicial processes, making them more cost-effective. Certain steps have been taken already in this area. A draft law which envisages that the criminal procedure will be completed after the appeal proceedings are over has been submitted to the head of state. The interference in the process of law after the entry of judgment into legal force will be done only in exceptional circumstances.

    It is also expected that the judicial process will become more open and understandable for the members of the public and economic operators, will have a conciliatory character because the pretrial and trial mediation will be used more widely. Modern technologies and e-document management will be applied in courts. All that will make the system more cost-effective and advanced, and will ensure its compliance with international standards.

    After the discussion the President approved the program of developing the count system designed to run in 2016-2021.