By Lilia Krapivina
Over the next five years, the sum of investments is expected to be quadruple that from 2006-2010, according to Mr. Semashko. He notes that Industry Ministry enterprises are set to receive 10 times as many investments over the next five years and that Belarus needs to build ‘a large iron founding plant’. “This is crucial for Belarusian mechanical engineering,” he stresses. The largest and most important projects include the construction of a facility to produce LCD panels, which also requires ‘huge investment’. Mr. Semashko explains that the Minsk Automobile Works (MAZ) and Minsk Tractor Works (MTZ) are expected to raise investments into their manufacturing to over $1bn each.
Key production assets are to be upgraded across the economy. “We need to accumulate working capital, simultaneously working on modernisation and technical re-equipment of the branches,” the official notes, adding that the country’s industrial companies are now demonstrating positive dynamics of growth. MAZ increased its output by 10 percent from January-October this year; however, in 2009, it suffered an almost 50 percent decline. Meanwhile, MAZ has reported 14.8 percent profitability.