During a meeting with Viktor Yanukovych on July 12 in Yalta, Russian President Vladimir Putin depicted to his Ukrainian counterpart all the charm of the country's accession to the Customs Union. As an example, ruler of the Kremlin has referred to Belarus, which, according to Putin, after joining "the triple" added 16% to its GDP.
UDF.BY asked political analyst Valery Karbalevich to comment on the statement of Russian President's.
- There are different methods of calculating the volume of Russian subsidies to Belarus. Naturally, the Belarusian side in every way understates the subsidies' volumes, Russia, on the contrary, overstates them a bit. So, I do not presume to say exactly what percentage of GDP are Russian subsidies. I think the figure of 16% is an exaggeration.
- Why Putin cited the example of Belarus, but not Kazakhstan, which is also a member of the Customs Union?
- It is because the Russian subsidies to Belarus is much larger than to Kazakhstan. Belarus - Ukraine's next-door neighbor. Belarus, like Ukraine, is a transit country. Belarus, has already sold Beltransgaz to Russia, and now Russia is trying to capture the Ukraine's gas transportation system.
Belarus serves as bait, blackmail, pressure. Russia wants to push Ukraine to membership in the Customs Union. And uses for this tactic of "carrot and stick". In the case Belarus serves as a carrot.