Alexander Lukashenko approves decision on Belarus' border protection in 2016

Alexander Lukashenko approves decision on Belarus' border protection in 2016

A group of independent experts will be set up on behalf of the President to work in the border area. Its main task is to study the effectiveness of structures on the state borders. The matter pertains to talking about fees, permits, tariff and non-tariff regulation. Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko stressed that such a measure is necessary to protect the domestic market.

The procedure for the approval by the president of resolutions for the protection of the state border of Belarus is a very important annual event.

Alexander Lukashenko:
Our border is a reliable barrier to illegal migration to the EU. We would like more help from the EU side. Europe is having problems with migrants now. But we should not sit with folded hands and think that we are not concerned. We in Belarus must not let this happen in Belarus. We need to control everything. We are absolutely not against the influx of migrants. But we need to know who this or that person is. We are a transit state, and if we lose these processes, as did Europe, then we will choke in crime. Therefore, we must pursue a policy that was carried out earlier. Migrants destabilized the situation in Germany and other states. I'm not talking about France. The United Kingdom is also concerned. It cannot protect itself against these migrants. So we need to keep an ear open. We must not let this happen here. Our policy must be to track every person who comes into our territory.

The border is often not only the question of safety, but also big economy. Especially in the case of Belarus, which is a transit country. Fees, taxes, import and export - everything is closely interwoven and linked with the current economic situation.

Alexander Lukashenko:
They have flooded us with imports. Our people like imported goods even if they are three times more expensive. But people must understand that the imported clothes is not just big money but absence of local jobs, we are working for some other people abroad. People should understand this.  Of course, it is necessary to step up our own industry (sewing, etc), so they are at the appropriate level. They can do it. I mean private traders and individual entrepreneurs who sew things better than that imported stuff.  Individual entrepreneurs who sell imported goods must understand that the certification of products is only the first step. If there is any product, there should be all supporting documents in place. We need transparent trade.

The Belarus President is in general satisfied with the work of the Border Committee.

Alexander Lukashenko:
Protecting the interests of our state on the border in order to help our production of our domestic market is a serious matter and it needs to be looked into. You know, you once said yourself that we cannot sell MAZ trucks but instead import about 2,000 foreign trucks. Moreover, these trucks don't differ in terms of quality, so we should look at other groups of goods.

 

Another trend that requires immediate attention and analysis is foreign trade between the countries of the Eurasian Economic Union and Europe.

Alexander Lukashenko:
Serious changes in the rules of trade between Ukraine and the European Union and Russia. Once again we are caught between a rock and a hard place, between the two major economic players. It is understood that this will affect our foreign economic activity, so you need to constantly keep an eye on all aspects and problems in this sphere. And the government should define their stance publicly here. We need to fulfill obligations within the Eurasian Economic Union to the Russian Federation. The President of Russia and the government asked me personally to comply with these obligations. And despite the fact that they took agreed that we would trade with Kazakhstan in transit and so on - it was my proposal. I told them that we would not put a barrier between us and Ukraine. What does it mean to close the border with Ukraine? It means to lose $5-6 billion in sales. We cannot do it. Russia does not ask us. But Russia wants, and rightly so, to see that the process is transparent. And then I said: we don't need to close anything. We have identified several areas according to which we will pass transit goods from Ukraine to Kazakhstan, China and so on. And I suggested to Putin: you define the border crossing points which are comfortable to you and you will be able to oversee this all.  As for our trade with Ukraine, we are not closing anything. I emphasize again: no one requires us to do so.

Unstable migration situation in neighboring countries, plus the economic imbalances are factors that make us look at the issue of border security from a new angle.

Alexander Lukashenko:
We must clearly understand that only our balanced and coherent set of measures determines the country's ability not to fall into the vortex of illegal migration, smuggling of goods, weapons, drugs, the influx of all sorts of militants and other criminal entities. 

The conceptual framework of Belarus' building relations with other countries is good-neighborliness.

Alexander Lukashenko:
We do not have a lot of people who would like to quietly go abroad to relatives, or visit graves and so on. We need to open the border for these people. But if someone wants to trade using a simplified system or smuggle, then you will be stopped.