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20 December 2022, 13:12

PM: Belarus' exports to Russia over $18bn in January-October 2022

MINSK, 20 December (BelTA) – Belarus' exports to Russia exceeded $18 billion in January-October 2022, Belarusian Prime Minister Roman Golovchenko told reporters while commenting on yesterday's talks between the presidents of Belarus and Russia, BelTA has learned.

"Now we can sum up the results of cooperation with the Russian Federation in the outgoing year. It was a special year for our relationship, a year testing our strength. Everyone knows the conditions in which we worked this year - severe economic pressure. In fact, the independence of both Belarus and Russia was at stake. Therefore, it is through this prism that we should consider what happened this year," Roman Golovchenko said.

According to him, yesterday the presidents stated that despite everything, both Belarus and Russia are adequately coping with these challenges, and the results speak for themselves. "Yesterday the Russian president said that in 2021 the trade rose by a third. This year's increase is about 10%," he added.

The prime minister noted that a very important strategic task for Belarus was to redirect its supplies to the markets of friendly states, primarily the Russian Federation."We succeeded to a greater extent. In January-October, our exports to Russia have exceeded $18 billion, which was more than we ever had for a year. I think by the end of the year we will reach a figure of $20 billion in exports. And, accordingly, we will practically minimize the deficit in trade with Russia," the head of government said.

Roman Golovchenko noted that redirecting exports to the Russian market and the markets of other countries was the main challenge facing Belarus this year, given the restrictions imposed on Belarusian traditional supplies to the markets of unfriendly states. "The Belarusian government worked hard, in cooperation with the Russian government, to solve this main problem. There were a lot of different issues," he said. “Previously, we practically did not use Russian seaports. It took well-coordinated joint work in order to distribute our exports across Russian ports, to get good tariffs for railway transportation, for transshipment of Belarusian products. This work was actually ‘on the go', built from scratch. However, thanks to constructive cooperation, we were able to do this."

According to the prime minister, there were many other decisions that were made by governments. One of them is the supply of Belarusian oil products to the market of the Russian Federation. "Previously, this could not be done due to the fact that Russian oil refiners were paid the so-called dampfer in order to reduce the cost of fuel supplies. Now we also use this dampfer, and at the request of the Russian side, we supply diesel fuel and gasoline to the Russian market. These are such minor issues, but they remained unsolved for a long time," he said. "There are still topics that need to be worked on. Yesterday the presidents set tasks for us."

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