MINSK, 16 July (BelTA) - About 1,900 applications have been submitted for the business ideas competition as part of the international technical assistance project to support local economic development, Belarus' Deputy Economy Minister Dmitry Matusevich told journalists before the start of the seminar “International Approaches and Practices to Promote Local Economic Development” in Minsk, BelTA has learned.
"We conducted a survey of the pilot districts. A total of 1,869 project proposals have been submitted. They will get financing next year," the deputy minister said. These projects are expected to make specific economic, social and environmental contributions, he added.
The proposals apply to all sectors: culture, production, services, processing, sports, and so on. According to the UNDP, each of the 12 pilot districts has submitted at least 100 applications. The leaders are Lida, Bereza, Borisov and Molodechno districts that have sent 200, 191, 183 and 182 applications for the competition, respectively. Khotimsk District and Kobrin District, the populations of which are the smallest, have submitted 100 and 151 applications, respectively.
The main type of proposed activity is services. Such proposals account for 67% of the total. The applicants have also submitted their ideas in tourism and agro-ecotourism, entertainment, household and social affairs, cosmetology, additional education. Some 5% of applications apply to recycling: industrial, plastic waste, agricultural and oil refining waste.
The best business ideas will be proposed for inclusion into the district plans for the development of small and medium-sized entrepreneurship.
The participants of the seminar got familiar with the international methodologies of local economic development successfully used in planning and governance of territories (territorially oriented development, regional innovative systems, local economic development and employment promotion, optimization of business processes and production systems).
“We hope that the best foreign practice will be tested in Belarus and will make the basis of local economic policy which will create the conditions for improving the economic capacities of districts, creating new jobs, improving competitiveness, and revitalizing entrepreneurship,” UNDP Deputy Resident Representative in Belarus Zachary Taylor said in his welcoming remarks.
It is expected that each of the pilot districts will be able to choose, with the assistance of experts and taking into account the needs of the district, one of the suggested methodologies for further piloting.
The international technical assistance project “Support to Economic Development at the Local Level in the Republic of Belarus” was registered by the Economy Ministry in January 2019. It is funded by the European Union and implemented by the UNDP in partnership with the Economy Ministry. Term of implementation is 36 months from 1 February 2019 till 31 January 2022. The project aims to support various forms of economic initiative, competitiveness and innovation for inclusive development at the local level.More about Economy