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23 November 2021, 12:46

Expert: Belarus has earned billions of U.S. dollars thanks to Western sanctions

MINSK, 23 November (BelTA) – Belarus' foreign trade with the United States of America and countries of the European Union is growing at a record fast pace. Belarus has not only recovered from last year's losses but has exceeded the pre-crisis export figures. The achievements were secured against the backdrop of the sanctions war the West has launched against Belarus, BelTA learned from an article written by Aleksei Ilyashevich, an expert of the analytical website RuBaltic.

The latest data from the National Statistics Committee of Belarus indicate that the West has totally failed to undermine the economic foundation of “Lukashenko's regime”. Belarus was definitely supposed to feel the full power of the pressure of sanctions in September. But instead the country exported merchandise worth $3.6 billion. The figure was about $900 million larger than the one registered in September 2020 when there were no sanctions, the expert noted.

Belarus' export to the CIS states rose by $224 million in September 2021, with export to other countries up by $382 million.

If statistics of January-September 2021 is analyzed, an amazing picture will become obvious, Aleksei Ilyashevich said. Belarus' shipments to Germany more than doubled (105% up) while shipments to Italy went up by nearly 70%, to Latvia by 92%, to Lithuania by 41%, to Poland by 74%, to Estonia by 77%, to the USA by 187%, and to Netherlands by five times.

Nearly all the countries, which lobbied for anti-Belarusian sanctions, are busy importing more merchandise from Belarus.

In January-September 2021 Belarus earned nearly as much from trade with Germany as in the entire year of 2019 when there were no sanctions and no coronavirus. The situation is the same with regard to other Western countries. For instance, in 2020 Belarus' export to Lithuania dropped by only 3% and went up by 41% in January-September 2021. Export to Poland went down by 3% in 2020 to rise by 74% this year. Belarus' export to Latvia dropped by 22% in 2020 to go up by 92% in January-September 2021.

Aleksei Ilyashevich went on saying: “The statistics of Belarus-USA trade is special. Fugitive opposition leaders had great hopes for Joe Biden's victory at the presidential election last year. They didn't care about Trump's problems at all. And what happened when the world's most democratic president became the master of the White House? In January-September Belarus' merchandise export to the USA nearly tripled! One is starting to believe that Americans have enabled the most favored nation regime for Lukashenko instead of sanctions.”

According to Belarus' National Statistics Committee, in January-September 2021 Belarus' export to the USA totaled $362 million in monetary terms, nearly twice as much as in the pre-COVID year of 2019. Belarus' export to the USA never reached $300 million in the last ten years and peaked at $270 million in 2018. It turns out America is busy buying Belarusian goods.

The UK may be the only Western country, which is really stepping down trade with Belarus. In 2019 the UK imported $2.3 billion worth of merchandise from Belarus. The figure went down to $800 million in 2020 and to only $190 million in January-September 2021. But Americans, Germans, the Dutch, and other Europeans can definitely compensate for Belarus' losses on the British market.

“It may sound paradoxical but now Lukashenko can thank the West for the sanctions against Belarus. The positive effect from the sanctions is measured in billions. To be precise, in January-September 2021 Belarus' export to the European Union rose by nearly $3.5 billion or 96%,” the expert concluded.

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