President makes working trip to Minsk Oblast

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China could build a new power generating unit in Minsk, President of Belarus Aleksandr Lukashenko told representatives of the China National Corporation for Overseas Economic Cooperation (CCOEC) as he visited Minsk CHP plant No. 5 on 17 February.

The head of state got familiar with implementation of the project to revamp CHP plant No. 5 with the use of Chinese investments.

The contract to build the unit was signed with the China National Corporation for Overseas Economic Cooperation (CCOEC) in September 2008. The project was funded by a € 260 million loan issued by the China State Development Bank against government guarantees.

The reconstruction of the power plant took two years. The new unit went online on 24 December 2011. A month and a half later the power plant reached the designed capacity.

The project increased the power plant’s capacity from 320MW to 720MW. The effectiveness of electricity generation has been improved thanks to a modern steam gas technology for burning fuel. the novelty is expected to save at least 141,000 tonnes of oil equivalent per annum spent on electricity generation, saving over $20 million spent on buying natural gas (on present terms).

Aleksandr Lukashenko unveiled a new power generating unit at Minsk cogeneration plant No. 5.

Aleksandr Lukashenko got familiar with the technology to generate heating and electrical energy using modern highly effective steam gas units.

The President talked to Belarusian and Chinese specialists who maintain the new unit. Aleksandr Lukashenko said Chinese specialists are necessary until Belarusian specialists are trained.

Aleksandr Lukashenko offered China to implement new projects in the Belarusian energy sector.

“Let’s plan another construction like that. Let’s invest money in real projects instead of giving money to Europe without any knowledge whether you can return the money,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

In particular, Belarus is ready to build a fourth power generating unit in Minsk, in the Krasny Bor area where the demand for heating energy is high. It will be a combined unit that will generate both electrical and heating energy.

According to First Vice Premier Vladimir Semashko, by late 2012 the contract may be signed. “If our proposals are accepted, it is feasible to start building the power generating unit in 2013,” he said.

“If you fulfill the conditions, and they are feasible for you, we will get down to implementation,” Aleksandr Lukashenko told top CCOEC executives.

“We are about to build a new power generating unit on the conditions Vladimir Semashko has mentioned,” the President summarized. “It is my gratitude to the Chinese leader,” he added.

At present three investment projects involving a total of $823.1 million in Chinese credit resources are in progress.

Six contracts were signed in 2008-2011 to implement Energy Ministry investment projects using a total of $1.25 billion in Chinese loans. 2011 saw the completion of the reconstruction of Minsk cogeneration plant No. 2 and the construction of a 1.5MW wind turbine in the populated locality Grabniki with about $50 million in Chinese loans spent. The projects will save 64,000 tonnes of oil equivalent every year. In addition, equipment worth $150 million was supplied in line with other contracts with Chinese companies, with Chinese loans provided. The Energy Ministry plans to attract about $1 billion in Chinese investments for promising investment projects via tenders in 2012-2015.

The President also drew attention to the implementation of the program to upgrade and develop the Belarusian energy system.

The national programs helped save about 1.6 million tonnes of equivalent fuel and substitute almost 760,000 tonnes of imported fuel.

In order to raise the share of local fuel and energy resources Belenergo has implemented seven projects to use local fuels, namely wood chips, peat, lignin).

The President also visited Avgust-Bel Company in Pukhovichi which manufactures crop protecting agents.

Avgust-Bel is one of the four large enterprises in Belarus that manufacture these products. When touring Avgust-Bel the President got acquainted with the process of supplying the agriculture industry with locally-produced chemical crop protecting agents. Aleksandr Lukashenko visited the main shops of the plant: production and storage facilities. He got familiar with modern technologies to produce, package and store crop protecting agents using cutting-edge technology.

The first startup complex of the plant in Pukhovichi District was commissioned in June 2009. The plant operates a closed cycle of production and packaging of herbicides and boasts high-tech equipment from leading European manufacturers. In 2010, the construction of the facilities continued. Overall, in 2008-2010 the facility used Br101.2 billion worth of investments in 2008-2010 and Br11.5 billion in 2011. Last year, the output reached 5,000 tonnes.