Decisive and efficient actions demanded from economic executive staff

President of Belarus says at the session discussing topical issues of economic development that he sees no necessity to change state policy

President of Belarus says at the session discussing topical issues of economic development that he sees no necessity to change state policy.



Mr. Lukashenko noted that the government has identified a number of issues which must be solved at presidential level. He emphasised that he has been considering the government’s proposals for several weeks. “I don’t think it’s possible or necessary to change our policy, should it be suggested, in this situation. This is the course of action which helped us to acquire independence and create our state. I cannot allow anything to put excessive pressure on people without results; I’m absolutely against it,” said the Head of State.

The President asked to remain committed to the policy that had been promised to the people during the election campaign. “We cannot lie to people. Otherwise, we will carry out the so-called reforms; they will be rejected and this will cause a lack of confidence and destabilise the situation; if we lose control and, perhaps, the face of the government, we will need even more money than we need today, for example, to repay the external debt,” noted the Belarusian leader. Mr. Lukashenko added that a monitoring group has been set up to analyse these issues. Moreover, he stressed that state policies are the criterion for making decisions.

At the session tackling topical issues of the country’s economic development, Mr. Lukashenko also said that he believes that the government doesn’t do its utmost to protect the domestic market.  “I’ve said this repeatedly. The situation is being closely monitored. So far it is not in favour of the government. We’ll see how things develop in the future.” According to Mr. Lukashenko, “to encourage Belarusians to buy domestic goods, local manufacturers should produce affordable and quality products. We can do it. The main point is to get things going,” he emphasised, addressing members of the government.

Mr. Lukashenko requires hard work and efficiency from all heads of departments. “The government must not be a kind of office. Given the current difficult economic situation, we should use the tools available to ‘manually’ manage the economy where necessary. It should provide help to everyone: businesses, governors, chairs of district executive committees and require them to quickly make efforts to efficiently deliver on the decisions taken.”

The President noted that the proposal of the government to discuss the recent trends on international markets, primarily in the Russian Federation, connected with the instability of the Russian Rouble and oil prices, was the reason for this session. He drew attention to the fact that Belarus greatly depends on oil prices, since the country refines about 22-23m tonnes of oil per year. Speaking of the Russian Rouble, Mr. Lukashenko said that the Russian Federation is the major market for Belarusian products. “We cannot neglect this fact. We have to keep an eye on the development of Russia and its economy while being aware of the trends there.” 

According to Mr. Lukashenko, the situation in the other external markets we are working with is far from perfect. “The International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other organisations have made negative forecasts while analysing global economic trends. It’s clear that these are just forecasts, but they have a certain psychological and, in fact, real impact on the development of various industries, including our economy,” noted the Belarusian leader. The difficult task is to retain our position with our trade partners in other countries, while also protecting the domestic market. The President believes that efficiency of the government’s work isn’t enough. We must also offer quality affordable goods to domestic consumers, and local manufacturers are able to do this.

The President requires decisive and efficient actions from the economic executive staff. Meanwhile, the major condition remains unchanged: a socially-oriented policy focus continues to be implemented.


WORD-FOR-WORD

Alexander LUKASHENKO, President of Belarus:

I don’t think it’s possible or necessary to change our policy, should it be suggested, in this situation. This is the course of action which helped us to acquire independence and create our state. I cannot allow anything to put excessive pressure on people without results; I’m absolutely against it…

I would like you to be committed to the policy that we have promised to our people during the election campaign. We cannot lie to people. Otherwise, we will carry out the so-called reforms; they will be rejected and this will cause a lack of confidence and destabilise the situation; if we lose control and, perhaps, the face of the government, we will need even more money than we need today, for example, to repay the external debt.

The government must not be a kind of office. Given the current difficult economic situation, we should use the tools available to ‘manually’ manage the economy where necessary. It should provide help to everyone: businesses, governors, chairs of district executive committees and require them to quickly make efforts to efficiently deliver on the decisions taken.


By Vasily Kharitonov

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