Sailing down the river

Belarus, Poland plan to commission Augustow canal this year
Commissioning the canal will be another important step in co-operation of the neighbouring states.

Augustow canal was built in 1825. It is 100 km long, with the Belarusian part making 20 km. At present Belarus is completing the restoration of its part of the tourist attraction and ecological object. In 2005 two new border checkpoints at the Belarusian-Polish border — Pererov-Belovezha and Rudawka-Lesnaya — were opened for tourists. According to Belarus Ambassador to Poland Pavel Latushka, the new border checkpoints are a serious breakthrough in the Belarusian-Polish relations, as no border checkpoints have been opened recently. The Belarusian side is interested in further development of the project for the benefit of the tourism industry development in both the countries. In particular, a Belarusian-Polish tourism industry seminar has lately been held in Belovezha to consider usage of the Belovezhskaya Puscha and Augustow canal as tourist attractions and introducing all ecological standards.

Pavel Latushka also informed, the Belarusian side has prepared two agreements for signing. Those are a draft interstate agreement on the state border regime and on legal issues co-operation. The second document is an intergovernmental agreement on co-operation in control over persons and vehicles crossing the Belarusian-Polish border.

The Belarusian Embassy in Poland is considering the possibility of opening more border checkpoints.

Irina Dorofeeva
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