Alexander Lukashenko: Every company should react flexibly to the situation on foreign markets

Alexander Lukashenko: Every company should react flexibly to the situation on foreign markets

Every company should react flexibly to the situation on foreign markets, said Alexander Lukashenko at the June 19 meeting to review the operation of the major Belarusian engineering companies. The decline in demand from key partners has a negative impact on the situation of our businesses. 

The President noted that under these conditions, issues of quality, competent managers and the diversification of sales come to the fore.

It is industry on which the Belarusian economy is based. This branch makes a third of the country's GDP. Belarus was earlier called the assembly plant of the Soviet Union - its machine-building complex was enormous. Today the brands MTZ and BelAZ are famous all over the world.

For the last 15 years, the industry has been developing rapidly, adding to 8 percent annually. Not every advanced economy can boast that.  But last year, the industry stopped bringing such results.

The situation in Belarus is mainly due to the global recession and the problems on the Russian market - the sanctions and the collapse of the Russian ruble. Due to the neighbors' devaluation the Belarusian Ministry of Industry lost more than three trillion rubles. There are not enough circulating assets at present.

Vladimir Semashko, Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Belarus:
Trying to compensate for what was lost on our traditional market, we posted a total growth of exports of 16.5% to countries of the CIS and far abroad. We increased supplies to such exotic markets as Africa by 1.5 times. Supplies to Latin and Central America are up 2.5 times.

Taking part in the meeting were representatives of the government, state control, ministers and industrialists. In particular, the leaders of MAZ, MTZ, BelAZ and Gomselmash. These are the key enterprises in the industry.

Alexander Lukashenko demanded that each enterprise work out their own flexible measures to respond to threats and challenges.

The President underlined that previous work methods are not relevant in the present conditions. The head of state urged enterprises to reduce costs, improve machines and the level of service. It is necessary not just to sell but to offer flexible financing mechanisms of calculations, be it lending or leasing.  

Alexander Lukashenko, Belarus President:
In 2013, I instructed senior officials to oversee the companies experiencing difficulties with the sales of products. Based on what I heard, this work has not been done properly. But, nevertheless, chiefs of enterprises are the main people at any company and it is they who will be held accountable first of all.
We need to define what we need to do first thing for the development of these enterprises. We need a systematic approach to solving the challenges.

Today, the government has offered to support the large industrial enterprises. During the week, there will be prepared relevant documents.

Vladimir Semashko, Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Belarus:
The measures for each enterprise are totally different, but basically they boil down to the restructuring of the receivables that have accrued due to objective reasons. The President generally supported the Government's proposals. The President, however, demanded that everyone (from the company director to minister, deputy prime minister and the prime minister) is fully accountable for the result.

Support will be granted but only for specific business plans. For example, BelAZ is planning to earn at least half a billion dollars this year.

Oleg Stepuk, First Deputy General Director, BelAZ:
Some of the latest deliveries are to Iran ($10 million), to Vietnam ($9.8 million). Bulgaria - $7.4 million, Mongolia - $3.2 million, Bosnia and Herzegovina - $3.3 million and so on. These are supplies to our traditional markets. But, of course, we are now engaged in the search for new markets. Western European countries such as Spain and Greece. Turkey. In Asia, we are working to enter the markets of Thailand, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines. Latin America... Bolivia, Colombia, Peru, Chile, Brazil. We are going to access new markets, we are looking for partners.

The latest high-level talks were the impetus for the machine-building complex of Belarus. We are talking about cooperation with China, India and Pakistan. After the visit of Alexander Lukashenko to Indonesia in 2013, the volume of Belarusian exports to that country doubled. All this time MAZ and BelAZ vehicles were being tested there. And now they finally received an order for 500 vehicles.

Vitaliy Vovk, Minister of Industry of the Republic of Belarus:
The main purpose is to maintain competence and labor collectives. Naturally, it is impossible without market. Therefore, we are tasked with working not worse than last year.