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08 December 2021, 19:57

Belarus, Russia's Altai Territory interested in expanding trade, economic cooperation

MINSK, 8 December (BelTA) – Belarus and Altai Territory, Russian Federation are interested in expanding trade and economic cooperation. Belarusian Deputy Industry Minister Aleksandr Ogorodnikov made the statement during the 7th session of the bilateral commission on coordinating cooperation between Belarus and Altai Territory, BelTA has learned.

According to the source, Belarus' trade with Altai Territory grew by 23.2% to $62.5 million in January-September 2021. The volume is expected to get close to $100 million according to results of the year. “For now there is disparity in mutual trade. We import more from Altai Territory. I am convinced Belarus has a large potential for expanding cooperation and not only commercial cooperation, commercial shipments. Your visit to Mogilev demonstrated that we have potential for realizing joint projects. In particular, the organization of the joint assembly of lifts. We have a good track record of setting up such enterprises. We understand on what principles such projects should work,” Aleksandr Ogorodnikov said.

In his words, Altai Territory's agriculture demonstrates high performance. “The region accounts for one third of the arable land of the entire Siberian Federal District. Altai Territory ranks second in terms of the area under cereals and leguminous crops. These are significant figures,” he pointed out.

The deputy industry minister also noted that the region is quite interesting from the point of view of tourism, excursions, and recreation. “We have many avenues of cooperation to explore,” he stressed.

Aleksandr Ogorodnikov noted that within the framework of the 7th Forum of Regions of Belarus and Russia an action plan was signed on realizing the agreement between the Belarus government and the Altai Territory administration on trade, economic, scientific, technical, and cultural cooperation in 2021-2023. “We are going to work hard on implementing this project for the next two years,” the official added.

In turn, Deputy Prime Minister of the Altai Territory government Aleksandr Lukyanov noted that for many years the region has been focusing on advancing relations with Belarus across the board. “Despite the geographic distance our trade and economic cooperation develops vigorously. Belarus is invariably one of the key foreign trade partners of Altai Territory. Belarus was our third largest trade partner after China and Kazakhstan in 2020,” he said.

Altai Territory supplies Belarus with railway cars, minerals, tires, flour and cereal products. “The Belarusian agricultural machinery industry has a vast chain of sales branches in the region. Specialized stationary service centers and mobile brigades in charge of vehicle maintenance and repairs work in the region. A rather high level of manufacturing cooperation of Belarusian and Altai enterprises is a distinguishing trait of our cooperation,” Aleksandr Lukyanov said.

Interaction in the production sector was mentioned during the session. In particular, the sides discussed the organization of joint assembly of passenger lifts and escalators in the Russian region, manufacturing cooperation for the sake of making machines and equipment for the power engineering industry, expansion of cooperation for equipping Belarusian vehicles and machines with tires made in Altai Territory. Participants of the session also discussed deliveries of Belarusian machines, vehicles, and equipment to Altai Territory organizations. The expansion of cooperation in agribusiness, agrarian science and education was also discussed.

As a result of the session the sides signed an agreement between the Belarusian State Agricultural Academy and the Altai State Agrarian University as well as minutes of the 7th session of the bilateral commission on coordinating cooperation between Belarus and Altai Territory.

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