Experts on President Lukashenko's State of the Nation Address 2015

Experts on President Lukashenko's State of the Nation Address 2015

The strategy for the near future. Economy continues to be the basis for the development of the Belarusian state. The annual state of the nation address of the President to the people and the Parliament becomes a handbook and a guide to action for the Government. Today, the whole of society, without exaggeration, is awaiting the implementation of the 10 steps for further effective development of Belarus.

Immediately after the meeting, the topics raised by the head of state were actively discussed in the corridors by parliamentarians and representatives of the Government. Later they shared their impressions with journalists.

Nikolai Plaksitsky, the House of Representatives of the National Assembly of the Republic of Belarus:
The head of state emphasized the fact that this year is unusual for our country - this is the year of the 70th anniversary of the Great Victory, the Year of Youth.  Probably the year that ends five years of our development, the socio-economic development of our country. Of course, the development of our economy is at the heart of the welfare of the Belarusian people, as the President said.

Lyudmila Mikhalkova, the House of Representatives of the National Assembly of the Republic of Belarus:
We need to work more closely on bills, with the look on life and people's needs. And before taking a decision or making an offer on the bill, it is necessary to monitor the situation and be very balanced.

The message is not just the analysis of the situation in the state, but also a strategy of action for the coming year.

The President has defined 10 steps for the effective development of the Belarus economy, focused on the important aspects: the use of budget funds, reducing inflation, creating a favorable business climate, export diversification, and the introduction of new approaches in agriculture.

Price level is another urgent issue. They are controlled by the state. Today, unjustified price increases must be prevented.

The message should be a handbook and a guide to action for the economic part of the government. For example, export diversification and search for new markets. This is problem number one.

The head of state drew attention to the establishment of business contacts with the Georgian side. For example, during the recent visit (the first in the history of bilateral relations) contracts for four million dollars were signed. 

A package of 15 documents and the growth of turnover by three times is a result of the highest-level meeting. Note that before that, Georgia ranked 57th out of Belarus' 170 trading partners.

From the beginning of 2015, Belarus became a party to the new integration association. At the end of May 2014, an agreement was signed on the establishment of the EEU. Experts believe that Belarus should first of all look at the partners in the Eurasian integration in the search for new markets.

Nikolai Sergeyev, political scientist:
We should aim, including using the Eurasian Union, to go to such capacious and promising markets as the market of China and Southeast Asia. This means access to a huge number of people, a lot of consumers, and we can get our niches there.

Particular attention should also be given today to the development of small and medium-sized businesses. This is the basis of prosperity in the economy and the stability of the state.

The state supports businessmen in all parts of Belarus thanks to special funds. You just need to prove that your business will be profitable for the society.

In recent years, Belarus has achieved much in agriculture. The figures are impressive.  Belarus is the world's third exporter of butter, ranks among ten largest exporters of milk and boasts 16% of the world's lands under flax. Today, however, the industry needs more effective methods of development, said the President.

Alexander Lukashenko:
Belarus is almost completely self-sufficient in food. Imports are less than 10% of the total consumption and goods are exported to 50 countries. Nevertheless, the industry needs a new, more effective methods of its further development. The main thing is to work on the principles of self-sufficiency. With the decline of state support, you should rely on mechanisms such as competitive selection and pay-off period of projects, equal access to loans and other resources, responsibility for the implementation and fulfillment of the targets set.
It is necessary to intensify efforts to attract private investment to the village. This work started a long time ago and we can do it. The Government should encourage investors based on an individual approach to each of them in the sale of agricultural organizations.

The same new effective methods of agriculture should help Belarusian farms to become self-sufficient. This is a task for the near future.

Valery Polkhovsky, financial analyst:
Indicators of economic efficiency of a number of agricultural enterprises, which are able to sell most of products in the Russian Federation, have now really increased. Over the years, the agricultural sector has become really good and powerful source of foreign exchange, which supports the national economy.

Social issues were touched upon in the address, too.

In particular, the Decree "On the prevention of social dependency." It was signed in early April. The President stressed repeatedly that the document targets parasites but not honest people who want to work and earn money.

Alexander Lukashenko:
The majority of people perform their constitutional duty, work and pay taxes. The authorities do not have any complaints in relation to such people. However, some able-bodied people do not participate in the financing of public spending. At the same time, they all use social benefits on an equal footing. From the point of view of the majority of people, this approach is unfair.
On my instruction, there was developed and adopted the Decree "On the prevention of social dependency." There has been much criticism. I fear sometimes we did something wrong. I have already instructed the Administration and the developers to listen to every proposal. Study, look and make sure we don't hurt honest people. We must not allow any mistakes.

During the Address, the President touched on the updated law on combating corruption. It should come into force in the near future. Especially because the bill has already passed the first reading in the parliament.

Valery Gaidukevich, MP of the House of Representatives of the National Assembly of the Republic of Belarus:
We took into account the views of all concerned. There were a lot of proposals during the discussion thanks to media. More than 300 proposals. Some of them were included in the law but not all. Very much aims to prevent corruption. This is the first thing. Secondly, we introduce such concept as social control.