Belarus may have the highest rate of economic growth in Europe. Moreover, the fact that Belarus is Latvia’s neighbor presupposes unlimited potential for business cooperation — Alfred Chepanis told “Business & Baltiya”.
According to Alfred Chepanis, the result of high-level economic relations between the two countries is that one third of the total goods turnover on the Latvian Railroads and a quarter of the total goods turnover in Latvian seaports are the goods from the Republic of Belarus. Due to this cooperation, Latvia’s budget received $150 million last year.
Nevertheless, argues the expert, Latvian railroads set up high carriage fares for Belarusian goods, raising them in the last three years by 53 percent total. And it is at the time when Lithuanians are constantly lowering their fares. “Belarus earns more than a billion of US dollars through potash mining in Soligorsk, says Alfred Chepanis. — It is a huge sum of money.
Potash consumption and prices are constantly raising worldwide, but Latvia does not appreciate the benefits of the long-term cooperation with the producer.” The former concerns particularly Belarus’ intentions to purchase seaport facilities in Latvia — after the intentions were announced a year ago, Belarus did not receive any formal response, emphasized the head of the non-profit organization.
Speaking about investments into Belarusian economy, Alfred Chepanis noticed, that currently there are 180 companies with full or partial Latvian investments operating in Belarus. “I think that globalization sooner or later will make Belarus the most attractive for international investments country in Europe,” concluded expert.