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05 June 2024, 13:46

Prospects of cooperation between Russia’s Irkutsk Oblast, Belarus outlined 

IRKUTSK, 5 June (BelTA) - Governor of Russia's Irkutsk Oblast Igor Kobzev outlined the promising areas of cooperation with Belarus following the visit of Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko to the region, BelTA has learned.

According to him, one of the topics discussed with the head of state was the creation of a single center of Belarusian machinery in Irkutsk Oblast, similar to the multi-brand centers that Belarus is setting up in other regions of Russia. About a hundred MTZ tractors, about 300 MAZ vehicles, harvesters and BelAZ rock haulers are delivered to Irkutsk Oblast every year. This volume, according to the Belarusian side, is enough to make it a viable project. Maintenance and repairs will also be provided in the region. “We are ready to consider this format,” Igor Kobzev said.

However, Belarusian manufacturers will have to withstand competition in order to succeed in the Irkutsk regional market. After all, China is nearby, and a lot of equipment is supplied to the Russian region from there. The governor believes that special conditions in this area can be provided for Belarus as Russia's partner in the Union State. In addition, he is ready to assist the Belarusian side in establishing closer contacts with the regions of China and invited business representatives from Belarus to join their colleagues from Irkutsk in communicating with partners from Liaoning Province and Shenyang city that are twinned with Irkutsk Oblast.

Another joint project, which is already underway and has good prospects, is the processing of wool and the manufacture of cashmere products. Earlier this year, a knitwear factory was launched in Irkutsk. This was the result of joint work of companies from Irkutsk, Mongolia and Belarus. “We are gradually moving forward,” the head of the region said. “We buy wool from Mongolia and make our own products. The president [of Belarus Aleksandr Lukashenko] also drew attention to this during his visit to Irkutsk Oblast. Business should look for options. 

Igor Kobzev also invited Belarusian specialists in the overhaul of one of the major sports infrastructure facilities. It can be used by Belarusian and Russian athletes as they prepare for the Asian Games, the governor added.
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