Meeting with Governor of Russia’s Penza Oblast Ivan Belozertsev
There are good prospects for the development of enterprises, including competing ones, in Belarus and Russia, Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko said as he met with Governor of Russia’s Penza Oblast Ivan Belozertsev on 6 June.
“The markets (both local and foreign ones in the future) of foodstuffs, clothing and even equipment are big enough and our manufacturers will be able to co-exist. The demand will be growing in the future. Therefore, you can count on us,” the head of state noted.
“You can feel at home here. We are happy to see you and provide all-round assistance to you. It is not only because we are interested in cooperation with you. It is because we are close people. And we are neighbors,” the President said. “Therefore, I am always happy to meet with the governors who saved our union of Belarus and Russia. Please remember that we will do everything we can for you, for Russians, with great pleasure.”
Aleksandr Lukashenko stressed that Penza Oblast is a sincere and honest friend and a reliable partner for Belarus. In spite of the decrease in the trade turnover in recent years, Belarus and Penza Oblast managed to raise it by 8% in 2016 to exceed $50 million. There is positive dynamics. In January-April 2017, the bilateral trade went up more than 1.5 times in comparison with the same period of the previous year.
“This is a good pace. Taking into account the potentials of Belarus and your region, we believe that, first of all, the enhancement of interaction in the manufacturing sector will be the locomotive for the development of our cooperation,” the President stated.
He remarked that the dealer centers of many Belarusian enterprises, for example, Amkodor, Gomselmash, Orsha Machine Tool Plant, etc. work well in Penza District. Industrial cooperation projects are implemented. Minsk Automobile Plant (MAZ trademark) delivers chassis for municipal equipment to GrAZ in Penza Oblast; Penzadieselmash uses Belarusian components for diesel generators.
At the same time, the joint production of Mogilevliftmash products has been put on halt because of the low economic efficiency. In this context, Aleksandr Lukashenko encouraged the specialists of the two sides to analyze the situation. “Given the modernization of the housing complex is in full swing in Russia, elevators will be in great demand. We can also see it in other regions,” the head of state said.
The President remarked that the partners from Penza Oblast have practical interest in Belarusian agricultural projects. The delegation will have a chance to familiarize itself with the biggest achievements in this field at the Belagro 2017 expo. “We will be happy to share our best practices, technologies in animal husbandry, cultivation of various crops, setting up large dairy farms and grain drying complexes, vegetable storehouses and other facilities. We are ready to deliver a wide range of farm equipment to your region,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.
The Belarusian leader described the construction industry, the housing and utilities sector as promising cooperation avenues. “Our companies have positive experience of building housing and roads, including in Russia. If you need, we are ready to provide our services and equipment to the region,” the President said.
Penza Oblast is also interested in the organization of the production of potato starch. The head of state suggested using Belarusian experience and technologies in this field.
Aleksandr Lukashenko also spoke about the cooperation in the delivery of passenger transport, including buses, trolleybuses, and electric buses.
“You can also offer a lot of things to Belarus. Your achievements in science-intensive branches of the manufacturing sector, the development of the agrarian complex with a focus on large farms are well known. In short, there are all opportunities for the more beneficial cooperation of Belarusian regions with Penza Oblast,” the head of state is convinced.
“If we are invited to build something in Penza Oblast, set up enterprises and do other things, you should know that we will do it as good as Russian companies. Besides, our services will definitely be cheaper,” Aleksandr Lukashenko assured. “I hope that certain people in the Russian government will not start to block our advancement on the market… Prices may fall. Certain oligarchs are afraid that their profits may decrease. If it does not happen, we will always work with you without any problems.”