Sunday, May 4, 2014

Lukashenko: Belarusian ambassadors should work towards boosting foreign trade

MINSK, 3 May (BelTA) – The Belarusian ambassadors should take efforts to build up Belarus’ foreign trade, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko said when announcing new appointments on 2 May, BelTA learnt from the press service of the head of state.

Speaking about the diplomatic corps, the President asked Foreign Minister Vladimir Makei’s opinion of the new appointments.

"Probably we need to appoint ambassadors under a particular program or following a certain program," said the head of state. He noted that "it is better not to rush to open embassies and appoint ambassadors in the countries where they will have nothing to do."

Vladimir Makei noted that all the new ambassadors are responsible and highly qualified people.

The minister agreed that ambassadors should be appointed to a country if there are plans to develop long-term relations with this country.

A good example is Ecuador. According to Vladimir Makei, earlier the Belarus-Ecuador relations were almost non-existent. Last year the trade between the two countries made up $28 million. The minister admitted that this is insignificant yet the two countries have a specific promising program. Ecuador's economy is similar to Venezuela's. Ecuadorian partners are willing to develop mutually beneficial joint projects with Belarus. We are ready to. Besides we will accredit our ambassador to Ecuador to several neighboring countries on concurrent,” said the Foreign Minister.

As for Mongolia, for the past two years the trade with that country has been steadily growing despite the bad international financial and economic situation. In addition, the two countries have promising programs to supply mining equipment, and also on cooperation in agriculture and the supply of agricultural machinery. The concrete work is already under way.

Speaking of the Netherlands, Vladimir Makei noted that the two countries traditionally have a good trade of more than $3 billion. Even without oil, oil products and potash fertilizers, the bilateral trade doubled this year. Besides, the Netherlands actively invests in Belarus. The Netherlands is also home to the headquarters of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, with which Belarus closely cooperates and was elected to its governing bodies last year.

"As for other countries, we constantly analyze our work overseas. I must frankly admit we do not always calculate all the options when appointing new ambassadors. But it is important to see the flaws and correct them in time,” said the Foreign Minister.

Alexander Lukashenko underlined that his main requirement is constant dynamic development of relations with this or that country.

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