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15 March 2022, 09:49

Russia, Belarus look to strengthen cooperation amid Western sanctions

Mikhail Mishustin
Mikhail Mishustin

MINSK, 15 March (BelTA) - Against the background of Western sanctions Moscow and Minsk are taking coordinated measures to ensure economic security and consider it necessary to strengthen cooperation in the Union State, Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin said as he met with Belarusian Prime Minister Roman Golovchenko on 14 March, TASS informs.

According to Mikhail Mishustin, the Western countries are putting a large-scale sanctions pressure on Russia and Belarus today. Their aim is to undermine the economic potential of the two countries, impede the functioning of financial systems, break production chains and ultimately deteriorate the quality of life.

“In this situation we are taking coordinated measures to protect our economic security and technological sovereignty of Russia and Belarus. First of all, we consider it necessary to strengthen integration in the Union State,” Mikhail Mishustin said.

According to him, 28 Union State programs approved by the Supreme State Council of the Union State in November 2021 are creating a solid foundation for this. They provide for the creation of a single economic and social space, deep cooperation in industry, energy, agriculture, digital economy, transport and many other sectors.

“We are actively working to align our regulatory framework in the tax, customs and antimonopoly legislation. We are also forming common rules of work in the financial and banking areas,” the head of the Russian Cabinet of Ministers said.

Mikhail Mishustin stressed that it is important to jointly ensure further growth of trade between Russia and Belarus. Last year it increased by about 34% compared to 2020 and reached $38.5 billion.

The Russian prime minister stressed that the two countries continued to implement major investment projects, accelerating the launch of new initiatives and would strengthen the chain of mutual supplies of goods and services and expand import substitution programs.

“Most importantly, we will identify new growth points for the economies of Russia and Belarus. I am convinced that unlawful economic sanctions will not be able to prevent the advancement of integration in the Union State and the further development of our relations,” he added.

The Russian prime minister added that Moscow was ready to discuss the most urgent issues of bilateral trade and economic cooperation, which had been set by the presidents of the two countries.

Mikhail Mishustin also thanked his Belarusian colleagues for their constructive assessment of the situation around Ukraine. According to Mikhail Mishustin, Moscow cherishes its allied and partnership relations with Minsk.

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