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15 March 2024, 19:55

Conditions when Belarus may lift restrictions from imports from Lithuania specified

MINSK, 15 March (BelTA) – A number of conditions need to be met before Belarus may lift the prohibition against importing individual commodities from Lithuania, BelTA has learned.

Lithuania has recently shut down two border crossings at the Belarusian border, leaving only two out of six operational. Roman Golovchenko said: “We think it has a lot to do with how popular Belarus is among Lithuanian citizens, who took pleasure in coming to Belarus thanks to the visa waiver for leisure and shopping. They saw the real picture of what is going on it. This picture differed greatly from tales of Lithuanian authorities. In addition to purely financial losses and transit Lithuania has also lost a large number of Belarusian tourists, who used to go there and leave a lot of money in the Lithuanian economy.”

Belarus has introduced retaliatory measures in response to Lithuania’s unfriendly closing of two border crossings. “But we don’t burn bridges. This decision has a certain timeframe. The prohibition will last till October. It can be lifted or extended once the timeframe is over. Let’s see how it will affect the workload of border crossings. I emphasize we are always ready for a dialogue. And we didn’t take the first steps to worsen good neighborly relations between the countries. The most important thing for us is to normalize transport flows. If they are ready for a constructive resolution, we are ready as well. If Lithuania decides to reopen the border crossings, we will revisit the matter of advisability of keeping various restrictions. If Lithuania doesn’t do it, we have plenty of tools to respond to any unfriendly actions towards our country regardless of whoever takes such actions,” the prime minister noted.

BelTA reported earlier that the government has expanded the list of commodities, which cannot be imported and sold in Belarus’ territory. The relevant amendments have been added to the Council of Ministers’ resolution No.700 of 6 December 2021. In particular, this list now includes individual goods originating from Lithuania: condensed milk and cream, fruits and nuts, coffee, fruit juices, water, vinegar, pantyhose, stockings, socks and other hosiery goods, certain civil engineering products, refrigerators, and freezers.

The Belarus government has also forbidden the import of individual goods across the Belarusian-Lithuanian section of the border. The following commodities cannot be imported for sale and consumption in Belarus’ territory: water, beer, wine, grape must, vermouth, other fermented beverages, ethyl alcohol, vinegar, pneumatic rubber tire tubes and tires, clothing and other used articles as well as used parts and accessories of transport vehicles.

Belarus implemented these measures in response to Lithuania’s decision to stop the movement of goods, vehicles, and people via two border crossings at the Belarusian-Lithuanian border.

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