MINSK, 10 March (BelTA) – The primary task for the government is to restore the volume of investment with the focus on import-substituting industries, Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko said at the government meeting to discuss the country's economic performance in 2022 and map out plans to address social and economic development tasks for 2023, BelTA has learned.
The president emphasized some most critical issues that require special attention. The expert groups coordinated by presidential aides conducted another monitoring of the regional economic situation in January 2023.
“About six months have passed since the first inspection and the specification of tasks. It is enough to draw some conclusions. I can see that the situation has slightly improved compared to the summer period. Unfortunately, anti-sanction restructuring has not been implemented to the full. While some managers are looking for and finding opportunities to work effectively, others have taken a wait-and-see attitude, hoping for better times. Others have decided that they have nothing to do with it and rely solely on the help from the government. I am glad that there are few of them,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.
In August 2022, the head of state once again tasked the government to restore the volume of investment with the focus on import-substituting, export-oriented productions that use local raw materials. “Nevertheless, I see from the reports that there are practically no new enterprises. Investment, especially in the regions, means the development of the settlement, new jobs, good salaries. This is what concerns everyone and gives confidence in the future,” the president stressed.
The government has decided on facilities and responsible persons to start the implementation of at least one such investment project in each region. The target plan has already been approved, and Aleksandr Lukashenko asked to report on how it is implemented. “What is the expected and maybe already real efficiency of your projects and ideas? In two and a half years we will have to report to the people on the implementation of the five-year program. If we fail, people will not hear to our excuses about difficult times and draconian sanctions. As I often say, there is no war in Belarus. Therefore, the key goals for the government this year are to increase the number of jobs and people's income,” the president said.
Real wages in Belarus began growing in December 2022, and the dynamics remained at the start of 2023. “But after all, this is not the merit of qualitative changes in the economy. It is the result of price policy adjustments. The payment of traditional corporate bonuses at the end of the year also added to the statistics. We need to think where to get the reserves to keep the growth of wages,” the head of state said.