MINSK, 19 June (BelTA) – Russia's President Vladimir Putin sees good prospects for expanding Belarus-Russia cooperation in energy. He made this statement during the session of the Supreme State Council of the Union State of Belarus and Russia in Minsk on 19 June, BelTA has learned.
The Russian leader spoke about most promising joint projects. In particular, he noted that Russian companies are building in Belarus a factory to produce carbon black that is used in car manufacturing and chemical industry. “We are also erecting a building materials factory and grain processing enterprises. These projects are estimated at about $480 million,” he said.
Vladimir Putin believes that the energy sector offers the greatest potential. He pointed out that the first power generating unit of the Belarusian nuclear power plant will be commissioned at the end of next year, while the second power generating unit will be inaugurated in 2020. “Russia's capital investments in the nuclear power plant made up $10 billion,” the Russian leader noted.
He reminded that Belarus and Russia are implementing joint projects to upgrade gas pipelines. Russia is set to inject about $2.5 billion in overhauling the Belarusian section of the Yamal-Europe pipeline by 2020.
Russia's president believes that the two countries need to scale up efforts to increase the output of science-intensive products. “It is important to encourage Russian and Belarusian business people to incorporate innovations in the real economic sector and to reward scientists and other specialists for implementing new technology,” he said. Vladimir Putin noted that this is the reason why a new award in science and technology has been instituted.
He emphasized the importance of interregional contacts between Belarus and Russia. The 5th Forum of the Regions of Belarus and Russia are due to take place this autumn. The president expects this interregional meeting to come forward with new initiatives. Vladimir Putin noted that it has become a tradition for the heads of state of Belarus and Russia to attend this forum. This year is no exception.More about Economy