Through prism of mutual interests

President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko gives interview to Venezolana de Television on eve of upcoming visit to Venezuela
The Presidential Press Service told BELTA that the President chatted for an hour and a half, discussing bilateral co-operation between Belarus and Venezuela, politics in Latin America and the wider international situation.

Mr. Lukashenko noted that, in a very short period, major projects have been implemented in Venezuela, with enterprises and homes built with the participation of Belarusian specialists.

“Initially, we agreed with Hugo Chavez that we’d buy  and extract your mineral resources according to your laws, while helping you to create an industrial base for your state. We’re ready to participate in developing Venezuela, protecting you from dependence on raw materials and creating powerful industrial and agro-industrial complexes in your country,” asserted Mr. Lukashenko. He also emphasised that Belarus is ready to participate in new projects in Venezuela.

“We’re ready to develop further the construction of chemical, petrochemical and household appliance enterprises, including those making televisions. In future, we’ll be building heat power plants, gas pipelines and a huge number of residential houses in Venezuela,” he added.

Mr. Lukashenko notes that extraction of natural resources is planned with the participation of Belarus, in particular phosphates (for the production of nitrogen fertilisers). Belarus produces huge volumes of potash fertilisers and is ready to establish a major centre in Venezuela to blend and sell fertilisers to the whole Latin American region, where demand is great. In addition, Mr. Lukashenko drew attention to the fact that a wide range of joint commercial enterprises are being set up in Venezuela for onward sale of goods to Latin America.

We’re carrying out Mr. Chavez’s ideas regarding the diversification of the economy. I’m sure that, over a five-year period, we’ll see striking results, which will further transform Venezuela,” said the Belarusian leader.

Mr. Lukashenko stressed that Belarus views Venezuela as a hub from which to liaise with all Latin America. He commented, “I see Venezuela as a great base from which we can work with all Latin America. I’ve also suggested to my friend Mr. Chavez that he consider Belarus as a base, in a good sense, for economic expansion in Europe.”

“The objective basis for our co-operation rests with the economy; we need each other,” said Mr. Lukashenko. “Our mutual need comes from our complementary economies, which inspire us to objectively co-operate.”

The President noted that Belarus, while co-operating with Venezuela, also relies on the abilities of major world players such as Russia, China, Iran and countries in Asia and Africa. “This is why we are co-operating with other powerful states; this support gives us confidence for the future,” said the Head of State.

At the same time, Mr. Lukashenko stressed that other states should not feel threatened by close ties between any two countries. “We’re not allying ourselves against anyone. We plan no conflict or war; we simply wish to ensure the independence and prosperity of our states and peoples,” he admitted.
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