MINSK, 31 May (BelTA) - Belarus is prepared to increase shipments of passenger, cargo, road-building, utility and agricultural vehicles, and elevators to Russia's Pskov Oblast, Belarusian Deputy Prime Minister Igor Petrishenko said during a videoconference meeting with Pskov Oblast Governor Mikhail Vedernikov, BelTA has learned.
"Trade and economic cooperation has been picking up pace. Last year the trade rose by 45%. Positive dynamics remained in place in the first quarter of this year, an increase of 61.7%. Exports have been growing too,” Igor Petrishenko said and urged to maintain this trend until the end of the year.
In his opinion, the possibilities of cooperation have not yet been exhausted. "In the light of the Western sanctions is is important that we step up work to replace imports from unfriendly countries. We have something to offer each other in terms of mutual trade, joint ventures. We have sufficient resources to meet the needs of Pskov Oblast in modern cargo, passenger, road-building, utility vehicles and equipment. Cooperation in terms of gas-motor vehicles, in particular MAZ buses, holds very much promise. Our bus running on gas-motor fuel have successfully passed trials in Pskov Oblast," Igor Petrishenko said.
Belarus is willing to intensify its participation in the agriculture development programs in Pskov Oblast, to increase supplies of agricultural engineering goods, including tractors, grain harvesters, grain drying complexes, sowing and tillage units, which are not inferior to foreign analogues.
"Our Pskov friends might be interested in using credit resources of the Development Bank of Belarus to finance the construction of housing and social facilities," Igor Petrishenko added.
In addition, Belarus is interested in increasing supplies of Mogilevliftmash elevators to the market of Pskov Oblast.
The deputy prime minister also hailed the cooperation between neighboring regions - Vitebsk and Pskov and called it as the positive example of interregional ties. "I suggest we scale up these best practices across other regions of our country. We will submit the relevant draft documents for your consideration," he concluded.
In 2021, the trade between Belarus and Russia's Pskov Oblast amounted to $155 million, up by 45% over 2020. Exports totaled $95.1 million (an increase of 44.4%). Belarus had a trade surplus of $35.2 million. In January-March 2022, the trade came at $42.7 million (up by 61.7%), exports made up $26.3 million (up by 56.3%). The surplus was $9.9 million.
Major exports were specific goods, milk and cream, frozen beef, fish, eggs, stoves, boards, films made of plastics, copper wire, footwear. Major imports were waste and scrap of ferrous metals, insulated wires, cables, furniture and its parts, tissue paper, wallpaper, rape seeds, finished and canned fish, caviar, electric generators and engines.