Cooperation between Belarus and Switzerland has huge potential, Deputy Chairman of the House of Representatives of the National Assembly of Belarus Valery Mitskevich said as he met with First Vice President of the National Council of the Federal Assembly of Switzerland Andreas Aebi on 13 February, BelTA has learned.
“Your visit to Belarus is a sign of mutual interest of our countries in a meaningful dialogue and long-term relations. Our cooperation has huge potential that we can and must harness. The Belarusian president has also stressed this multiple times. I believe that upgrading the Swiss representation in Belarus to a full embassy will be a serious step in this direction. I am happy to note that Belarusian and Swiss MPs played an important role in this,” Valery Mitskevich said.
According to him, interaction between the Belarusian and Swiss parliaments is developing in both the bilateral and multilateral formats. Valery Mitskevich noted that in 2018 Chairman of the House of Representatives Vladimir Andreichenko visited Switzerland.
“Our work within the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly is very effective. We value the support our Swiss colleagues showed for Belarus' position in the past three years. For example, at the last session of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly, the Swiss delegation acted as a co-author of the Belarusian resolution on strategic foresight. Belarus is eager to cooperate with the Council of Europe and the European Union in general,” Valery Mitskevich added.
In turn, Andreas Aebi also expressed interest in stepping up bilateral cooperation. “We have a lot of joint activities and we will enhance our cooperation in various fields,” he added.
The cooperation between the two countries received a strong impetus in 2017, with the establishment of the Belarus-Switzerland parliamentary group of friendship, co-chaired by Chairman of the Belarusian Federation of Trade Unions, member of the sixth-convocation Council of the Republic Mikhail Orda. The Swiss part of the group includes members of most of the parties represented in the Swiss parliament.
Since the establishment of the parliamentary group of friendship and thanks to active support from the Belarusian Embassy in Switzerland, the Belarusian-Swiss cooperation in politics, economy, business, and the humanitarian field has advanced significantly. “For example, in 2019 the Swiss company Carrosserie HESS AG that produces trolleybuses and buses set up its subsidiary in the China-Belarus industrial park Great Stone. The International University MITSO of the Federation of Trade Unions of Belarus signed cooperation agreements with HEG Arc (Switzerland). Swiss teachers give lectures to students of the International University MITSO,” Mikhail Orda said.
He added, that the two countries are able to establish cooperation in many more areas.