Future reinforced by past
President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko pays official visit to Armenia
During his visit, Mr. Lukashenko negotiated with his Armenian colleague, Serzh Sargsyan, discussing a range of bilateral relations and agreeing to activate co-operation in various directions. The presidents primarily focused their attention on development of economic contacts and expansion of bilateral trade, as well as the implementation of joint industrial and infrastructure projects involving investments and the launch of contemporary technologies.
“Belarus and Armenia are interested in deepening relations across all areas. We have no closed areas of co-operation — from agriculture to military-political issues. However, at the current stage, our main priority is the development of economic contacts and the expansion of bilateral trade. We need to jointly search for new forms of economic interaction, including the implementation of joint industrial and infrastructure projects involving investments, to launch contemporary technologies,” Mr. Lukashenko explained.
He continued, “Belarus is ready to offer the most favourable conditions to Armenian partners placing capital and opening businesses. Such areas as machine building, IT, pharmaceuticals, agriculture, energy saving and the production of food products have good prospects. We hope for dialogue with Armenian businessmen, as well as representatives of the Armenian diaspora.
During the visit, a package of documents was signed, tackling collaboration in the spheres of nuclear security, agriculture, sports and humanitarianism. Moreover, an inter-governmental agreement was signed on information sharing and co-operation regarding nuclear security and radiation protection. The National Olympic Committee of Belarus and that of Armenia also have plans to liaise.
Mr. Lukashenko visited Armenia’s nuclear power station and noted that the experience of Armenia in the sphere of nuclear power is interesting to Belarus. “You’re aware that Belarus is constructing its first nuclear power station, so we’re interested in information sharing on secure operation and new approaches towards the construction of reactors.”
Mr. Lukashenko notes that Armenia has accumulated significant experience in the exploitation of such sites. “We hope that Armenia will be able to send at least a dozen qualified specialists to help us in the initial stages of operation,” emphasised Mr. Lukashenko.
He also attended the opening of St. Hovhanne’s Church in the Armenian town of Abovyan. The Belarusian President underlines that friendly Armenia is an important and close partner of Belarus in the Transcaucasia region
The President of Armenia commented that the official visit of the Belarusian President took place just ahead of the 20th anniversary of diplomatic relations between our two countries. “Approaching this date, we can boast a high level of bilateral co-operation and solid understanding gained through positive interstate collaboration over a period of time: our main asset,” he said.
According to Mr. Sargsyan, a wide range of economic, geopolitical and humanitarian activities were discussed, including the activity of the Inter-governmental Commission for Trade and Economic Co-operation, which is due to meet this summer. Definite plans for trade-economic and investment collaboration were tackled, as was the provision of mutual access for goods and services to the markets of Belarus and Armenia.
According to Mr. Sargsyan, special attention was paid to strengthening Belarus-Armenia interaction within international organisations. The two sides exchanged opinions on the development of co-operation within the CSTO, while discussing current processes within the CIS. The President of Armenia underlined that our two nations enjoy especially friendly relations. “We’re united in wishing the future of our relations to be harmonious, following from our historical past; we’ve overcome the past century’s obstacles side by side, fighting shoulder to shoulder through the Great Patriotic War. Thousands of Armenians died on Belarusian fronts so our friendship is sealed with the blood of perished heroes. We need to preserve that and build upon it,” emphasised Mr. Sargsyan.