MINSK, 11 May (BelTA) – The country has to look at its best during the 2nd European Games Minsk 2019. Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko made the statement as he visited the Students' Village, which will accommodate participants of the forthcoming competitions, BelTA has learned.
The head of state was informed about the village's readiness for the 2nd European Games. The president was made familiar with the conditions created there for the accommodation of the participants of the competitions, the organization of catering services for athletes. One of the president's main requirements was to use as many domestic products in catering and accommodation as possible. “We should feed the people out of our own resources. It will be a good opportunity for us to learn how things should be done. If you cook Belarusian cuisine dishes, both athletes and representatives of the delegations will be delighted to eat them. It is our culture. Let's give them a taste of our life,” Aleksandr Lukashenko suggested.
All the 15 sport venues where the competitions will take place are 99.9% ready. “The venues where people will compete have been tried and tested. We know how to organize things. The ice hockey world championship is a case in point as well as many other top competitions, world cup stages, and so on. I have absolutely no doubt that the 15 sport venues, which will host specific kinds of sport, will be ready [before the games begin],” the president stressed.
All the Students' Village facilities, which are supposed to be built in the run-up to the 2nd European Games Minsk 2019, have already been built and are being commissioned. In particular, the second hall of residence in the Students' Village has been built. The head of state wondered how well university students in the country as a whole are supplied with rooms in halls of residence and how the state of affairs will change once all the facilities in the Students' Village are commissioned.
Belarusian Education Minister Igor Karpenko explained that the facilities will allow increasing hall of residence availability levels up to nearly 94% in Minsk and up to 96.5% in the country. Right now 84.7% of university students can live in halls of residence. Apart from that, spare premises will be made available for increasing the export of education services. The head of state approved of the approach: “People from other countries want to study here. They pay a lot of money. It is necessary to build dormitories for them.”
The head of state was also informed about the construction of halls of residence for the Grodno university and the Belarusian State Medical University, which are supposed to be finished in 2021 and 2020 respectively. The head of state warned that construction or renovation work at such facilities should be done well, fast, and on time. “Don't drag out this process. Renovations sometimes take 5-7 years in our country. University students need modest, decent, and comfortable accommodation. They don't need palaces,” he remarked.
Aleksandr Lukashenko pointed out that all the facilities built for the 2nd European Games Minsk 2019 have to be used effectively after the games are over. In particular, the Minsk mayor was instructed to oversee further use of equipment of the catering facilities. “All of it should be distributed across Minsk [after the games are over] to cater to university and school students as well as kids in kindergartens. Everything should be used starting with tables and chairs and ending with hot meal equipment,” the president said. “We are not poor. Yet we are not as rich as to throw away good resources.”
The Students' Village compound consists of nine halls of residence able to accommodate over 9,800 people. The compound will be used as the Athletes' Village during the 2nd European Games Minsk 2019. It will accommodate official sport delegations – a total of about 6,000 people. All the organizational matters to set up the Athletes' Village have been taken care of. New halls of residence have been commissioned. The beautification of the territory and the reconstruction of physical training and sport facilities are nearing completion. About 700 volunteers will work in the Athletes' Village. Access to the compound will be restricted as from 13 May. The Athletes' Village is supposed to open and delegations are expected to start moving in on 15 June.More about President