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27 March 2020, 13:51

Belarus president warns private companies against laying off employees

Aleksandr Lukashenko
Aleksandr Lukashenko

MINSK DISTRICT, 27 March (BelTA) – The private sector must not fire people in this difficult time. Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko made the statement as he visited the gypsum panel manufacturer OAO Belgips on 27 March, BelTA has learned.

Aleksandr Lukashenko said: “I've noticed (information became available yesterday) that private companies, primarily construction companies, have started shutting down operations and, most importantly, laying off people. I want every private company owner to hear this: if a company, a small one or a large one, sacks people (it is impossible in state-run enterprises because we stay on top of it), it is unlikely the company will continue to exist in Belarus.”

The president stressed that on the contrary, they should support people in time of need and should preserve jobs. He is convinced that the private sector has resources for it. “They should check their pockets, safe deposits in order to support their company and the people, who have been working for them and earning this money,” the head of state stressed.

In his words, the situation is not a problem in Belarus for now, but negative trends are emerging. “It is only the beginning. But things may become worse. It is simple to fire people. Your pockets are full of money, particularly in construction companies that sell apartments. So, a private owner may fire people now and spend the money on himself, but later on he will come and say: I can restore the workforce but you should give me either a cheap loan or a budget subsidy. These owners should share what little they have but they must not sack people,” Aleksandr Lukashenko summed up.

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