Posted: 22.02.2024 11:28:00

Opinion: in its foreign policy Belarus acts according to circumstances and opportunities

Strengthening co-operation and liaisons with Asian countries is a timely response to the challenges of time and stormy markets. Belarus is expected in Asia, which needs our technologies and competencies. The Eastern philosophy of interaction between countries is becoming closer and clearer for Belarusians, so our foreign economic interests are confidently shifting in the eastern direction – as noted by Yulia Abukhovich, a senior lecturer at the Belarusian State Technological University’s Economic Theory and Marketing Department.

“We have been talking about the need for trade-economic relations with our CIS partners from Central Asia for quite a long time, but a breakthrough in this regard took place quite recently. However, we must understand that the rapprochement of states is a mutual movement towards each other; the efforts of only one side are not enough. The situation of Asian countries differed from each other quite significantly, and therefore the pace of our rapprochement with them over the past three decades has also been different. For example, Tajikistan – which experienced a deep internal crisis and civil war from the very beginning of its sovereignty – began to establish diplomatic relations five years later than other states of the region. Another peculiarity of this country is that it did not move from the closing Eurasian Economic Community (EurAsEC) to the emerging Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), though there were no obstacles to this. Meanwhile, Uzbekistan was experimenting with various support areas in early 2000s, being part of the alternative and dominant organisation at that time in the post-Soviet space: the GUAM Organisation for Democracy and Economic Development (Georgia, Ukraine, Moldova, Azerbaijan). In the second half of the same decade it turned around and even joined the CSTO for six years. Over the past 12 years, Tajikistan’s position can be called equidistant from all major centres of power while Turkmenistan adheres to a very balanced and cautious position in establishing ties – both in politics and in the economy. Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan also have their own path today. Therefore, in its foreign policy, Belarus has acted and is acting according to the circumstances and opportunities that open up for it at one time or another,” the expert noted.