Talks with Russia President Vladimir Putin

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Belarus is asking for nothing from Russia except for equal conditions, Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko said as he met with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in Sochi on 7 December.

The Belarusian head of state thanked Vladimir Putin for the invitation. He noted that the meeting took place ahead of a major event, the 20th anniversary of the signing of the Union State Treaty. “A lot has been done over these 20 years. It is a well known fact. A lot still needs to be done. We do not hide this. Our governments have made a thorough analysis of the document. We have addressed this issue many times and adjusted the actions of our groups regarding the analysis and development of the corresponding plans for further integration,” said Aleksandr Lukashenko.

He stressed that before the meeting with Vladimir Putin he had checked on Russian TV channels and Telegram channels. “Everybody asks a question: what is Lukashenko going there with? I will say, Vladimir Vladimirovich, that we have really done a lot, but we do not talk much about it and we should,” the Belarusian leader said.

The president stressed that the parties met to take a look at the analysis of the Union State Treaty and the relevant issues. “We are not asking for anything, we do not insist on anything. We agreed long time ago, while developing the document, that people and economic entities should have equal conditions for life and work. Equal conditions, we need nothing more,” the head of state said.

“We do not ask, as some say, for cheap gas and cheap oil. We are ready to buy gas for $200 [currently the price of Russian gas for Belarus is $127 per 1,000 cubic meters] and to buy oil for more than $63 per barrel. The main thing is to have equal conditions. If our enterprises buy for $200, competitors [in Russia] should pay the same price. Otherwise, we will not be able to set the basis for our relations. As a scientist, Candidate of Economic Sciences, you understand this as well as I do. This is the only problem our governments are working on today. We have met to solve these issues,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

“Thank you again for the invitation. I have my house here as well [within the area of Belarus spa resort]. I can say that I am at home,” the head of state added.

The lights went off for a while shorty after the official opening speeches were made by the leaders of the two states.

The meeting took place in the Bocharov Ruchey State Residence. Apart from the two heads of state the meeting was attended by the prime ministers and other representatives of the government delegations of the two countries.