Working trip to Vitebsk Oblast, Mogilev Oblast

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It is needed to promote rural development in Belarus, President Aleksandr Lukashenko of Belarus said at the session to discuss the development of small populated areas in Orsha District and Shklov District on 12 November.

At the beginning of the session the head of state stressed that it is essential to do more than just to develop agricultural production and beautify territories in certain populated areas of Orsha District and Shklov District.

“Some time ago we started the modernization of our agricultural industry and made certain progress. We have acquired certain experience in agricultural production development and rural development in general,” the head of state remarked. “Our achievements helped us preserve rural areas. If we had not done it, there would have been virtually no people in villages. Having done a lot in agrotowns, we transformed villages.”

“We must look forward – this is the main objective. We must be concerned about the future of the rural sector, and step up efforts today,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

The President remarked that people, places where they live, and production facilities are important for the development of the rural sector.

In particular, the participants of the session discussed the proposals to upgrade production facilities in a number of agrotowns in Shklov District. For example, it is possible to create a comprehensive integrated structure at the premises of Amkodor-Shklov, Novoye Yubileynoye, and Bolshiye Slaveni.

Aleksandr Lukashenko emphasized that certain financing is needed to achieve the goal. “I do not exclude the possibly to attract an investor. It can be a private or state-run investor, but the plan must be fulfilled. It is needed to set up the holding company of the future in the agricultural sector,” the President said.

“But remember that there should be no artificial mergers and dissociations. A well-developed plan is needed to achieve the goal,” the President concluded.

The head of state said that certain elements can be used taking into account the experience of previous work. It is important to use all these factors to advance agricultural production to a higher level and improve living standards in rural areas. It is also needed to do the same in other regions of Belarus, Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

Speaking about the involvement of private business in the agricultural industry, the head of state said that there are successful examples of such work in Belarus. This, in fact, has good prospects. At the same time, the President emphasized that it does not mean mass privatization in the agricultural industry. “We will think about the results. It is good if this works out all right, but we will not do anything in an artificial way,” he said.

The efficiency of work and rational approaches to the development of enterprises and territories were the main areas of focus during the President’s trip to Vitebsk Oblast. Aleksandr Lukashenko underlined that the entire power vertical should take part in the resolution of these issues. “We must determine the zones of responsibility. The chairman of the rural council should be the main authority here. He must have certain functions and authorities,” the President said. “But the vertical must work. It is needed to learn to make money. We will make the power vertical work hard and yield results.”

According to Aleksandr Lukashenko, it is inadmissible when enterprises do not have a development plan. “They are used to getting money from the budget. They work, make next to nothing, and do not know what the future has in store for them,” the head of state said. In the town of Kopys, Orsha District, Aleksandr Lukashenko also visited the potteries of the local arts and crafts center. The President pointed out the importance of preserving arts and crafts for the state and encouraged the organization to look for additional non-budget financing sources.

The session also focused on the development of the town of Kopys, Orsha District, its social infrastructure, production facilities, housing construction, renovation of the Petrovsky bulwark and the road network, and other issues.

On 12 November the President of Belarus also took part in the opening of the ice arena in Shklov.

“I know that this event will be viewed ambiguously by our people. Someone will complain that today it is not the time for such construction projects. This is not true. Remember that such projects are implemented with a focus on the people’s health. I want your kids to have an opportunity to play this great men’s, and already women’s, sport, ice hockey, in good conditions,” the head of state noted.

Aleksandr Lukashenko expressed wish that good athletes, including Olympic champions, would be brought up in this sports complex.

According to Aleksandr Lukashenko, the Ice Arena provides all necessary conditions for taking up sport. “The ice is great and this is the most important thing. Everything was done qualitatively here. Let us live on this land, love this land, take up favorite sports. Take your children in here, and later they will bring you here as well,” he said.

Apart from the ice rink, the sports complex in Shklov includes gyms, training and choreography halls, sauna with a small swimming pool, a cafe and other facilities. The Ice Arena also boasts a 1.9km ski and roller track.

The complex is designed to host different exhibitions, cultural and other events.