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14 February 2023, 10:12

Opinion: Cooperation with Africa will greatly benefit economies of Belarus, Russia

Anton Dudarenok. An archive photo
Anton Dudarenok. An archive photo

MINSK, 14 February (BelTA) – Economic cooperation with African countries will give a powerful impetus to economic development of Belarus and Russia, analyst at the Belarusian Institute of Strategic Research (BISR) Anton Dudarenok told BelTA.

According to him, Africa is one of the most promising regions in terms of natural resources and human potential. “Africa is certainly a promising market. Today, its GDP is estimated at $3 trillion, although back in 2015 this figure did not exceed $2.3 trillion. This is a significant increase within such a short time. In addition to that, Africa is home to six of the world's fastest growing economies. The current dynamics are predicted to remain in place in the future. The economy, population, and resources – all these factors contribute to Africa's growth. Therefore, economic cooperation with African countries will give a powerful impetus to economies of Belarus and Russia,” he said.

According to the BISR analyst, this also applies to demographics. At present, about 1.4 billion people live there. According to forecasts, 10-15 years from now Africa will be the world's leader in terms of population growth. “Accordingly, the demand for food, healthcare services, culture, technology will increase. This is a huge emerging sales market,” Anton Dudarenok said.

A reminder, Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko recently paid visits to the United Arab Emirates and the Republic of Zimbabwe. The total economic effect of the visit to this African country is estimated at $200 million. In the next two years, Belarus plans to supply 4,000 tractors and agricultural machines to Zimbabwe. African countries have not joined the Western sanctions against Russia and Belarus. By developing mutually beneficial relations with Africa, the Belarus-Russia Union State seeks to counterbalance the negative impact of the Western sanctions.

“Now African countries are experiencing rapid growth. They need investments and technologies. And the country that transfers technologies and investments will get an advantage. We have every chance to reach a new level of relations with countries of the continent,” Anton Dudarenok believes.

The trade between Belarus and Zimbabwe has grown seven times since 2018 to reach about $40 million in 2022. Belarus posted a foreign trade surplus. In 2023 Belarus is scheduled to participate in six exhibitions in Africa, namely in Zimbabwe, Côte d'Ivoire, Nigeria, Angola and Egypt.

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