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Tuesday, 30 August 2022

Lukashenko regrets not empowering Belarusian People's Congress to elect president

The updated Constitution of Belarus should have empowered the Belarusian People's Congress to elect the authorities, especially the president, Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko said at a government meeting on 30 August to discuss the development of civil society and the work of political parties and public associations in the country, BelTA has learned.

Monday, 29 August 2022

Uninterrupted operation of Belarusian state petrochemical concern Belneftekhim discussed

Uninterrupted operation of Belarusian petrochemical industry enterprises has been secured. The relevant matters were discussed as Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko met with Chairman of the Belarusian state petrochemical concern Belneftekhim Andrei Rybakov, BelTA has learned.

Friday, 26 August 2022

Lukashenko visits BelOMO

Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko is touring Vavilov Minsk Mechanical Plant – Managing Company of BelOMO Holding Company on 26 August, BelTA has learned.

Thursday, 25 August 2022

Lukashenko sends Independence Day greetings to Ukraine

Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko has extended greetings to the people of Ukraine as the country celebrates Independence Day, BelTA has learned.

Wednesday, 24 August 2022

Lukashenko presents awards in recognition of perseverance through 2020 turmoil

A ceremony to present state awards took place in the Palace of Independence on 24 August, BelTA has learned.

In recognition of exemplary execution of their duties, significant achievements in the course of military service, and high professionalism Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko awarded three dozens of military personnel and representatives of defense, security, and law enforcement bodies: the Defense Ministry, the Internal Affairs Ministry, the State Border Committee, the State Security Committee, and the President's Security Service.

Aleksandr Lukashenko noted that these people were at the forefront during very complicated times for the country. A number of civilians, who demonstrated resolve and bravery in the most complicated conditions in the course of ensuring security and order in the country in August 2020 and autumn 2020, were also awarded.

Aleksandr Lukashenko remarked: “Events of those days that you and I will not forget, one can say, memorable days of 2020 go deeper and deeper into history. We are starting to wonder increasingly often about what really happened back then. An evaluation of those events has been provided. And repeating myself is not my goal today. I will say only one thing. Every nation writes its own history just like a person does since birth. And we state facts of our life with regret or pride as we look back some time later. Some didn't have very good pages. Some take pride in the years that have passed. The same is true for the Belarusian people. All in all, nations tend to give evaluations to their past history.”

The president stated that from this point of view the year 2020 did not add anything good. “But the Belarusian nation endured. You and I endured and survived. It is worth it. And if we evaluate it, if we say those were hard days, hard August and September but we endured, then we can take pride in this page from this point of view,” the Belarusian leader stressed.

Aleksandr Lukashenko addressed all participants of the ceremony: “First of all, I'd like to thank our people. And primarily all of you. Virtually all of you here are military personnel. We've endured primarily thanks to bravery, resilience, thanks to these good and kind qualities of yours. Back then we didn't think about heroic deeds or actions. We simply understood that we had to do our jobs. To protect our country, protect peace and calm of our citizens. It is our purpose, the purpose of government agencies, military personnel and people, who stand with us.”

Aleksandr Lukashenko stressed that he is exceptionally grateful to these people. He said that after those events he had instructed to reward merits of all the guys, who stood in the streets to the death, who were traumatized, including very seriously, but did not retreat. “All of them should be found and awarded even if there are thousands of people. But we may have neglected someone and failed to notice. Things happen. Life is complicated today. It is necessary to find all those, who stood with us at the barricades, who stood to protect our peaceful life in those August and September days. Even if today they drive grain harvesters after retiring from the army. We will do it,” the president said.

He added that it always happens that one fails to notice those who are near and it seems that it should be like that. “It should be like that. Those who are near walk without looking back and carry out orders. I think it is time to repay the debts,” the head of state added.

Aleksandr Lukashenko presented well-deserved awards to participants of the ceremony. However, the list of awardees is much larger. The relevant presidential decree specifies hundreds of names. The prime minister and the state secretary of the Security Council will present well-deserved awards to these people soon upon the president's instructions.

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Tuesday, 23 August 2022

Lukashenko calls for final decision on new university admission rules before year end

Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko instructed to take the final decision on the rules of the country's university admission campaign 2023 before the end of 2022, Education Minister Andrei Ivanets told the media after the government meeting hosted by the head of state on 23 August to discuss the development of the national education system, BelTA has learned.

At the meeting the president was briefed on the results of the recent admission campaign and readiness of the country's educational institutions for the new academic year. The head of state and the participants of the meeting discussed three main topics related to the educational system. There were the educational process in schools and universities, human resources in educational institutions and the university enrollment system, which means an efficient link between the school and university education system.

Aleksandr Lukashenko was interested in the future university admission rules. The president's main requirements are to see every applicant behind the exams and to understand the strategy for selecting school leavers. It is inadmissible to run experiments every admission campaign, because some mistakes can take decades to correct, he stressed. “We need to do everything right,” the head of state said.

Belarus has been using centralized testing as major exams to enter university for many years already. It is time to mull over whether such a system is effective today and what adjustments it needs. The president set a task for the participants of the meeting to make necessary proposals before the new year: either to preserve the existing approaches or to introduce necessary changes in order to “see the applicant”.

“The central question is how to select applicants who should come to university motivated. He or she should be motivated not just for the learning process but for receiving education in order to work in the real economy of our country,” said Andrei Ivanets.

The university admission campaign 2023 will in general follow the already announced rules. School leavers will sit exams combined with the centralized testing as well as tests depending on the chosen specialty. It is quite possible that some changes will still be made to the ongoing admission campaign. For example, there can be more than two combined exams to be taken at option. These things are still under discussion. The final decision will be submitted to the head of state before the end of the year.

“Everything is quite dynamic, and the issues that require urgent decisions should be taken promptly. Of course, the proposals that will be developed and submitted to the head of state may also affect the admission campaign. The issue related to the centralized testing has already been determined. Another question is that the centralized testing is just an element of the admission campaign. So we need to see what this centralized testing should look like and what additional admission tests could be introduced in a certain university or a group of universities,” the minister explained.

Andrei Ivanets added that tests themselves would also be slightly changed. “We are moving away from the tasks where there is an opportunity to guest the answer. Today half of the test contain the tasks where there is an opportunity to choose an answer, and the rest is where you need to solve a specific task. We are changing the structure of the test, minimizing the number of multiple-choice tasks. This will help us “see” the applicant,” the minister said.

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Monday, 22 August 2022

Lukashenko sets tasks for new vice premier

We need to keep the economy going at least at the level of last year, Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko said as he met with the newly appointed Deputy Prime Minister Piotr Parkhomchik, BelTA has learned.

Aleksandr Lukashenko noted that Piotr Parkhomchik has a wealth of experience of working in industry, including in senior positions of such large enterprises as Minsk Tractor Plant and BelAZ. However, the new deputy prime minister is yet to delve into other areas of work, and Yuri Nazarov, who moved from the post of deputy prime minister to the post of head of the Belarus President Property Directorate should provide him all-round assistance. "You are intimately familiar with industry. The energy complex, petrochemical, woodworking, forestry are new areas of work for you as a deputy prime minister," the head of state said.


Piotr Parkhomchik

According to him, Yuri Nazarov in his new position will keep an eye on forestry and woodworking: "If necessary, he will provide the necessary help and assistance. He will keep tabs on forestry, woodworking. There is also Gomel Oblast. This is something he and Ivan Krupko promised me. They will do everything to ensure that Gomel Oblast reaches the level of at least Brest Oblast," the head of state said.

About the economy as a whole

Addressing the new deputy prime minister, Aleksandr Lukashenko outlined a number of tasks in various areas: from industry and agriculture to specific projects.

"In the economy our task is not to fall below last year. Industry should play the main role here,” the head of state emphasized. “Agriculture looks set to grow by 4% as projected. There is everything for this. The weather has been good. We are set to harvest 8 million tonnes of cereals (we are almost on the home stretch). Probably, this will be 8.2 million tonnes. That's going to be great. Plus rapeseed, plus corn. If everything works out we will have 11 million tonnes, a record high for our country. This will be enough to feed people and to make compound feeds for the animal husbandry.”

On new markets

It is important we tap into new markets and preserve the traditional ones, the president said. Distant countries such as, for example, Zimbabwe, are promising markets too, the Belarusian leader believes. "This is a unique country," he said. “You will be able to work in such countries. They also have enough problems. Zimbabwe, for example, has been dealing with sanctions for a long time. Probably, its gold, diamonds have been of interest to some Western leaders."

"I have already said that there is no need to discard any markets," the Belarusian leader continued. “If we are able to work in the west, we will work in the west, in the south, north, east... wherever our products are needed. Do we have a gigantic economy, like Russia? No, we don't. Our economy is compact. What we produce is needed everywhere: both food products and mineral fertilizers, especially today. We need to do this to prevent hunger. The West will buy these fertilizers. It is close to us. There is no need to give up on these markets,” the president said.

The president added that the number one issue for the Council of Ministers is import substitution: “We are talking a lot about it, and we have started to do something. Recent troubles, these sanctions have forced us to deal with import substitution.”

On the implementation of investment projects

Aleksandr Lukashenko stressed that Piotr Parkhomchik would continue overseeing the implementation of major investment projects he had been responsible for before. In particular, these are the investment projects at the oil refineries in Mozyr and Novopolotsk, as well as the launch of the Belarusian nuclear power plant at its full capacity. “Piotr Aleksandrovich, we have to get serious about these issues and finish them all. We need to deal with this red tape, sort everything out in principle. The BelNPP must operate at full capacity. You need to deal with these issues,” the president said.

The production of MAZ buses was also discussed at the meeting. “It is a very promising sector. You see that we fail to meet the demand. Everything necessary should be done for MAZ. You need to help, do everything possible to develop bus production,” the head of state instructed.

He recalled his recent trip to Miory and his visit to the rolling plant: “It is a good enterprise that can work. We know what needs to be done there. We need to make the best use of it.”

Aleksandr Lukashenko also touched upon the tanning industry: “We talked a lot about rawhides. I am planning to visit the company in the near future. Take a look at the management of the enterprise, at all those who manage this sector. It is a very important production today. The market is huge. We need to apply additional efforts here. This is not the same as making BelAZ trucks and selling them. The rawhide must be refined and sold with a high added value. All necessary decisions have been made there. We need to revisit the company and see how they are implemented."

The president said that among the important areas of work for the deputy prime minister is the implementation of projects at Grodno Azot and Svetlogorsk Pulp and Board Mill. As far as the latter is concerned, it is necessary to organize advanced processing there, Aleksandr Lukashenko stressed. “We need to make it perfect in order to sell the finished product, not semi-finished goods, and provide ourselves with cardboard and other products as well,” he said.

“We should invest in what we can produce. Once we came to this conclusion in woodworking. If we have good automotive engineering, heavy vehicles and other vehicles, let us work further here, there is a lot of work to be done in these sectors, primarily is what concerns import substitution. It is the same here. If we produce pulp or something else from wood, let us turn it into paper, then paper into cardboard and packaging. Why do we export semi-finished products, and then import cardboard to pack women's pantyhose or perfume? We have to do all this at home. We need to work deeper in the areas that are effective today and which products are in demand in the markets,” the head of state said.

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Friday, 19 August 2022

Lukashenko promises to get municipal roads repaired

 The state will pay close attention to restoring automobile roads of local significance. Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko made the statement as he talked to workers of the agricultural enterprise Zhuravlinoye and residents of Pruzhany District, BelTA has learned.

Aleksandr Lukashenko said: “The state should now take a serious look at local roads. There are two programs covering an entire five-year term. We will restore all the municipal roads.”

According to the president, very serious work will have to be done in some areas.

Close attention will also be paid to land amelioration. “Launch the melioration systems, which were built once. It is necessary to restore everything right away,” he said. “A complicated task but we will allocate funding. While you should take good care of what has been created at the nation's expense.”

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Thursday, 18 August 2022

Foreigners encouraged to buy Belarusian food at border

 Products of Belarusian agribusiness are highly popular among those who live near the border. Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko was told about the fact during his working trip to Grodno Oblast, BelTA has learned.

Aleksandr Lukashenko noted that a lot of people buy products in Belarus now. The customers include not only Russians but Ukrainians, residents of Poland and Lithuania.

“And thank god, let them come. If you have something to sell. After all, I've asked those [officials responsible for retail trade in the regions] to arrange simple, conventional retail outlets at the border. So that you could bring and sell products. So that they [residents of neighboring countries] could take products away. They pay good money,” the president said.

Grodno Oblast Governor Vladimir Karanik mentioned that guests from neighboring countries prefer driving to the nearest stationary shop after refueling their cars. “We keep restocking the inventory of those shops and see how trade turnover over there grows,” he remarked.

“It is even better,” Aleksandr Lukashenko responded.

The head of state also gave instructions to assist Belarusian agricultural producers with developing their proprietary retail chains, including in Minsk.

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Wednesday, 17 August 2022

Lukashenko makes key personnel decisions

Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko has taken a number of important personnel decisions, the press service of the Belarusian president told the Belarus 1 TV channel and confirmed it to BelTA.

Valery Ivanov who had chaired the Belarus President Property Management Directorate for over a year, asked the head of state to consider his transfer to another job. Aleksandr Lukashenko responded positively.

It should be noted that over such a relatively short period of time, Valery Ivanov managed to create a dynamic working environment in order to fulfill the tasks set by the head of state. He managed to achieve substantial progress in improving the state of things at organizations subordinate to the Belarus President Property Management Directorate. The use of his experience and knowledge in another important area will be considered in the near future, after his health improves.

Yuri Nazarov took over from Valery Ivanov as Chairman of the Belarus President Property Management Directorate. In his previous role as deputy prime minister, Yuri Nazarov was in charge of mechanical engineering, petrochemical industry, woodworking and science. Yuri Nazarov has a wealth of experience in leadership roles. He worked at the Belarus President Property Management Directorate, was deputy head of the directorate in 2010-2013. He is intimately familiar with production and economic branches of this diversified structure.

In turn, he was replaced as vice-premier by Piotr Parkhomchik, who until now worked as industry minister. Piotr Parkhomchik is a seasoned executive with significant management experience in the manufacturing sector. For more than 13 years he led BELAZ, a flagship of Belarus' industrial complex. He knows all the instructions and requirements of the head of state, and he will oversee their implementation in his new role.

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