Updated at 15:15,21-01-2021

Lukashenka rebuffs Moscow

Nasha Niva

Our own privatizations

The President of Belarus Aliaksandr Lukashenka rebuffed the latest statements of some Russian officials during the meeting with President of Bashkortostan Rustem Khamitov.

Lukashenka noted that he was willing to discuss questions about the privatization of Belarusian enterprises. However, the Belarusian leader stressed that the talks should be held at a round table on equal terms, reports Telegraf.by

"We know what the competition and the market are, but we do not want to follow the Russian scenario of privatization, as it used to be in the '90s",
said the President of Belarus.

According to him, Belarus is ready to cooperate in the most democratic principles, but the privatization process will be held under Belarus’s terms and conditions.

"It is our privatization, and we will decide what shall we privatize and when. And, most importantly, at what price and under what conditions".

Equal opportunities to everyone!

"If Russia is afraid today that our common market of the common customs area is flooded with some cheap knockoff from other countries, so one shouldn’t have created it",
BelTA quoted the President of Belarus.

"No sooner we had formed it, when we were hailed upon with statements, destroying this common economic space", said the President of Belarus commenting Russia’s ambassador Surikov’s words stating that Lukashenka mixes policy and economy and there is no difference who is going to buy Belarusian enterprises. The point is that Belarus must start the privatization.

"I also want to note: we believe that privatization and other issues are not just economics. This is great politics. Therefore one shouldn’t be delusioned in this regard", said President of Belarus.

Aliaksandr Lukashenka also noted that the Common Economic Space would only be effective given the equality of all its members and no pressure on one another. CES was created in order to protect its producers and people so that everyone in the common economic space could act on an equal footing, he said.

Russian ruble is not weclome

Lukashenka also commented on Russia’s ambassador's statements on introductions of Russian ruble as the domestic currency in Belarus and said that the failure to introduce the Russian ruble as the national currency in Belarus is not a disaster.

"For me Belarus is sacred just like Russia is. Our relations are sacred whatever money we may use. We have Belarusian rubles, you have Russian ones. If we decide so, we can find ways to get a currency to work in Belarus and Russia. It is not a catastrophe that we don’t use Russian rubles today".

Car owners triggered the crisis

Russia’s ambassador Surikov also mentioned that Belarus will not survive another recession. However, Lukashenka found reasons to contradict this statement, too.

According to him, Belarus overcame the recession brilliantly and it is not the poor management, but the Belarusian car owner who triggered the crisis as they tried to buy automobiles before new — a much higher one — tax introduction forced by Russia on Belarus in order to protect Russian automobile producers from cheap European cars inflow from Belarus.

"Another thing. Once we started talking about raising car import prices in order to protect Russian automakers, our people exported up to $3 billion to Germany and other countries in order to import junk cars. That was the reason instead of ineffective management or some system", said the President.