Working trip to Grodno Oblast

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The state should help people find jobs, Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko said during the working trip to Grodno Oblast on 24 March.

The head of state was informed about the beginning of the spring sowing campaign in Belarus and in the region. The President described the spring sowing campaign as the main topic of his working trip.

Aleksandr Lukashenko visited the agricultural enterprise Sovkhoz Lidsky where he was informed about the fulfillment of his instruction to organize the production of high-capacity agricultural equipment.

Aleksandr Lukashenko was shown Belarusian-made machines for the application of mineral and organic fertilizers, ploughs made by Minoity Repair Plant, and the first self-propelled sprayer in Belarus made by OAO Lidagroprommash. The head of state was assured that all resources, including technical tools, are available for farming.

Speaking about the spring sowing campaign, Aleksandr Lukashenko demanded to use fertilizers and observe all technological processes in farming.

The head of state remarked that nitrogen fertilizers are always in demand both in Belarus and abroad. Aleksandr Lukashenko gave an instruction to think about the location of the plant taking into account logistic opportunities, the availability of workforce, and other important aspects. The project will cost about $1 billion. “Does it make sense to open the second enterprise of this kind near Grodno? Such enterprises should be located in various corners of Belarus, but it is not the main concern,” the head of state said. “Think where to set up this solid modern enterprise.”

The head of state clarified his instruction regarding finding jobs for unemployed Belarusians by 1 May. “When I said that everyone needs to get jobs by 1 May, I meant you should offer them jobs,” he explained. For instance, the spring sowing campaign has begun. It means labor teams can be formed and sent to work in agricultural enterprises. All the necessary conditions for proper labor organization need to be enabled. At the same time it is necessary to continue creating jobs at existing enterprises and new ones, stressed the President. People should be taught new professions if necessary. “

“People should not be looking for these jobs on their own although it is, certainly, up to them. But the current situation when we fail to come up with proper employment plans is alarming and conclusions need to be made. This is why I’ve said that people need to get jobs mainly by 1 May,” Aleksandr Lukashenko remarked. “We should help people find jobs. You have to offer jobs to people, get them employed.”

Aleksandr Lukashenko also clarified his instruction not to fire workers without authorization of municipal government agencies: If several people are dismissed by an enterprise, the management needs to find employment for them.

Aleksandr Lukashenko also asked about salaries in Grodno Oblast and once again reminded about his instruction to raise the country’s average salary to the equivalent of $500. “We have to do it. There is no other way,” the Belarusian leader underlined.

During the working trip the President also inspected the progress in the renovation of the Minsk-Grodno motorway. “You must be wise and thrifty,” the President said.

Grodno Oblast Governor Vladimir Kravtsov said that parts of the motorway will be commissioned in stages starting from 2018. Aleksandr Lukashenko instructed to build road catering facilities along the motorway in the future.

Aleksandr Lukashenko also visited the meat processing plant Arvibelagro in Lida District. He was informed about the status of poultry farming in the country and progress in the work to attract foreign investments, create new jobs, and implement cutting-edge import substitution technologies. The head of state got familiar with the modern process of poultry meat processing.

According to the Arvibelagro company management, Belarus has created excellent conditions for doing business, and the investor plans further expansion of the business in the country.

“It bothers me that some projects have been stopped halfway. This project was here unfinished for a long time until people, who are not strangers to us, with whom we once lived in one country (and it does not matter that we live in different countries now) came here. They invested money and started to produce the goods that the country needs. The market here is very big,” thePresident said when talking to the workers of the company.

“We really need such new jobs. It is good that these people who are not strangers to us have come here, and they do not think that Belarus is an alien country for them. We will help you the same way we help all private companies with whom we have reached agreements, who have come here and launched production,” the Belarusian leader said.

Aleksandr Lukashenko remarked that the state creates favorable conditions for developing business and attracting foreign investors. “There is no unfair treatment of businessmen in Belarus,” he said.

He noted that regional authorities are encouraged to attract foreign investments, so the government is interested in the relevant process.

The workers of the enterprise asked Aleksandr Lukashenko about the state of affairs in the security sector in Belarus. It was underlined that a Ukrainian-type situation will not happen in Belarus. “The Ukrainian scenario will not happen in Belarus with me as president. I will not allow a repetition of the Ukrainian scenario in Belarus,” the Belarusian leader said.

According to Aleksandr Lukashenko, some want to create trouble in Belarus. “Some want to destabilize the situation, and they use our scumbags for that,” the President said. “They were like partisans, digging pits and hiding stuff. They hid arms, rebars, axes, knives, grenades, etc. They say they teach children to be patriotic. Using what? Ball grenades?”

“Some seem to be itching. There is a line that nobody should cross. No one is allowed to break the law and violate the Constitution. If the authorities fail to see this, then there will be a chain reaction which will be very hard to stop. Because millions of people will be involved,” the head of state noted.

Aleksandr Lukashenko said that a Belarus-born woman living in a Western country gave information that a provocation was being prepared. “Our specialists went there, talked to the woman and she said: I am not afraid of anything, I will write a statement to warn you. That encouraged us to take active measures. I instructed the intelligence services to immediately launch an operation to obtain information about these people, and we found a whole arsenal of weapons,” he noted.

The President remarked that the illegal activities were financed mainly via Lithuania and Poland. “They [Lithuania and Poland] got offended when I spoke about Ukraine, Lithuania and Poland in Mogilev. But why should they if this is true?” the Belarusian leader said. “American and German organizations were channeling the money through Poland and Lithuania, and most of the money remained there. As for those in Belarus, they have been living quite well with villas and luxurious cars,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

“Why do they write: We are not social parasites? If you are not parasites, why are you finding excuses then? They are parasites. They are afraid of being forced to come out of the shadow and declare their property. Where do they take all this money from?” the head of state said.

Aleksandr Lukashenko stressed that those people, who took to the streets seeking answers to some personal issues, have been used in someone else’s interests. Many people have already realized it and now refuse to take part in the forthcoming similar events. “Even some of the thugs have seen that they are being used. They saw those munitions and said: no, we are not doing this. They stopped participating in these rallies and demonstrations. They understood that the authorities were not scared,” the head of state said.

“The authorities should perform their functions. Once caught scared, they will be in trouble, but this means a much worse situation for you,” the President added.

The head of state said that the Internet is a great achievement. However, it is sometimes used for various information attacks. “Today we are talking about information wars as one of the elements of hybrid wars,” the President noted.

In his words, the nature of modern wars is changing. They do not necessarily reach the hot stage. “Internet has become the main battlefield. Those who can counter this war will survive. It is very important. I should say that we have learned to do it several years ago,” the Belarusian leader said.

A memorial complex will soon be created at the Kuropaty site in Minsk, the President made a corresponding statement at the meeting with Arvibelagro workers. “I have given instructions to create a compact memorial, not a gigantic one like the Brest Fortress. A tender is in progress. We will make this memorial possibly like a small chapel,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

The head of state made it clear that it is inadmissible to exploit the issue for political goals.

The President spoke about recent events relating to a scandal triggered by plans to build a business center in Kuropaty. In his words, the problem was artificially blown out of proportions. “It had nothing to do with Kuropaty. There are political motivations behind the campaign. Imagine, you live in Grodno and think: what kind of government is it that gives cemetery land to a businessman? It was done to show you the ‘mad kind of government’ in Minsk. Things were totally different in reality. I would never have allowed building something in these lands. Even more so because I drive past Kuropaty to my office every time,” the Belarusian leader stressed.

“A memorial will be built over there. It will be a public place for remembering the people, who perished there,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

The workers of the enterprise also asked the head of state about the tourism potential of Belarus and the recently introduced visa-free regime for the citizens of many states. “If five days are not enough, we will extend this period. Why should we be afraid? Belarus is an open country with open economy, and people should come here in an open way. It does not do harm to anybody,” Aleksandr Lukashenko is convinced.

The head of state emphasized that the visa-free entry to Belarus was also meant to attract the representatives of business communities from other countries. “A businessman should come, and he will not stay for a long time here. Five days will be enough. He will come, solve all issues, and go home. Then another businessman will arrive,” the President said.

Aleksandr Lukashenko remarked that security issues remain under control. A special list of people who are not allowed to enter the country for certain reasons has been compiled.

Speaking about the tourism appeal of Belarus, the head of state believes that Belarus’ nature and people are the main treasures of the country. Many people are seeking for peace and quietness in Belarus, they like our rural estates offering comfortable recreation conditions. “Preserve this purity and kindness of our Belarusian hearts,” the head of state added.