Meeting with Sverdlovsk Oblast Governor Yevgeny Kuivashev

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Belarus is ready to step up manufacturing cooperation with Russia’s Sverdlovsk Oblast. The statement was made by Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko as he met with Sverdlovsk Oblast Governor Yevgeny Kuivashev on 13 October.

The President underlined the importance of cooperation with Russian regions, which, in his opinion, represents the foundation of relations with Russia. He reminded that there had been difficult times in Belarus-Russia cooperation but cooperation with the regions had seen the relations through.

Speaking about Sverdlovsk Oblast, Aleksandr Lukashenko stressed that it is an economically developed territory of Russia with a high level of business, cultural, and public activity. This region is indeed a reliable and promising partner of Belarus. In 2013 trade between Belarus and Sverdlovsk Oblast exceeded $0.5 billion. The head of state remarked that trade had decreased a bit, which was not normal. The President also said he believed that the current visit of the Sverdlovsk Oblast delegation would at least recover the previous trade figures. “Taking into account a number of joint projects which we are going to implement, we hope to boost bilateral trade in the future and to establish effective cooperation in order to reach our goals,” the President stressed.

According to the head of state, joint projects in the energy sector, mechanical engineering and machine-tool building, science and other areas are a testimony of the mutual interest in expanding ties in all the key avenues.

Sverdlovsk Oblast has well-developed machine-building, metallurgy, a robust military-industrial complex, is one of the largest transport hubs. “It is a good place for creating the base of manufacturing cooperation with Belarusian enterprises and a platform for promoting joint products to Ural, Siberia and the Far East,” the President said.

Aleksandr Lukashenko stressed that Belarus was ready for broad cooperation with Sverdlovsk Oblast in all areas. In particular, Belarus is ready to supply agricultural machines, automobiles, road construction machines, municipal vehicles that residents of Russia’s Ural know very well.

The President reminded that during the international industrial expo Innoprom that takes place in the city of Yekaterinburg every year Belarus has been demonstrating products by leading mechanical engineering companies, achievements in the area of science, industry, and innovations for three years already. Belarus is also ready to share the experience of the processing of agricultural products and ready to supply food, set up joint ventures.

“We have many contact points, objective mutual interest in the development of cooperation in a number of concrete areas,” the head of state remarked. Aleksandr Lukashenko said that the Belarusian side will promptly consider all the proposals of the Sverdlovsk Oblast delegation.

The head of state also said he was confident that as a result of the visit the sides will come up with concrete arrangements that will secure the expansion of comprehensive ties between Belarus and Sverdlovsk Oblast.

Aleksandr Lukashenko touched upon the relations of Belarus and Russia in general. “We do not see ourselves in isolation from the Russian Federation. Only together, only in cooperation. Only if we stand together to face any challenges, we will be able to survive and live,” said the head of state. “Events in the neighboring country testify to that. Who could have thought that such things are possible at all?”

“I think we have been and will be together,” Aleksandr Lukashenko stressed.

He remarked that economy is the foundation of Belarusian-Russian relations. “If we advance well in the trade and economic sphere, then we will not be afraid of any gales and storms,” the President was convinced.

The Governor of Sverdlovsk Oblast, in turn, noted that the region is eager to deepen cooperation ties with Belarusian enterprises in mechanical engineering, energy sector, delivery of Belarusian products which are famous for their quality. Yevgeny Kuivashev stressed that Sverdlovsk Oblast is confident in the reliability of Belarusian partners. The region’s delegation comprises 94 people representing various industries.

“Let us work using honest principles and we will never regret. Neither Russian nor foreign companies regretted that they opened offices in Belarus. It is comfortable for them to work here,” Aleksandr Lukashenko emphasized.

The meeting focused on the prospects of cooperation in mechanical engineering, heat power engineering, railway transport, culture, within the framework of veterans’ organizations.

The Governor presented a replica of the monument to People’s Artist of the USSR and Belarus, founder of Pesnyary Vladimir Mulyavin which was unveiled in Yekaterinburg at the beginning of October.

“You know my attitude to this person. Thanks to this Russian man who came to Belarus all of us began to speak Belarusian and sign Belarusian-language song in the Soviet times. He showed what the Belarusian language is and how beautifully it can sound to the whole world, and especially to people in Russia. He is a truly great man. I appreciated him very much. I had very good relations with him. He made an invaluable contribution to the development of Belarus’ culture. And our people appreciate this person who was born in Sverdlovsk Oblast. Such people unite nations,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.