Science can and should bring maximum return, including material, said the President of Belarus at the ceremony to present diplomas of Doctor of Science and professor certificates. At a meeting with the Head of State, there were discussed the future developments and present-day state of Belarusian science.
The ceremony was attended by more than 20 people. These are scientists working in various fields, from medicine to agriculture.
After the collapse of the Soviet Union Belarus has managed to preserve a strong scientific school.
At present, the Academy of Sciences alone has about 11,000 researchers, 47 institutions and 12 different centers, more than 10 experimental stations. By 2020, Belarus plans to increase budget spending on scientific activity by half.
The President rightly points out that science should bring real profits.
Alexander Lukashenko, Belarus President:
Science today is the most important resource for the lifting of entire industries. New developments can significantly save resources and energy, help reduce production costs and make Belarus competitive in foreign markets. The topic of import substitution is still relevant. It becomes very important. It is important for us to not simply produce affordable goods of higher quality but also fully meet the needs of the customer, tailored to our resource base and operating conditions. It is no exaggeration to say that special attention is to public humanities because it is their achievements that are the basis of the ideology of the state, which determines the outlook of people in any society.
We need high-quality textbooks. I have been repeating it for several years and I promise you that this year will be a turning point. I want the chiefs to hear it. Stop talking about it. If there are no good books, we will never get you - doctors and professors - in the future. I have to say to the Government and the Ministry of Education: you are simply negligent approaching this. This is disregard. That should not be the case. In three months, you'll need to report to me on the implementation of orders and tasks that are acute at school. Let alone universities, you know the situation there better than me. There are also enough problems there.
Another topical issue is the training of young scientists. Continuity is one of the conditions of the effectiveness of science. Despite his age - Sergey Shcherbakov is only 35 - he developed a unique method for the production of rails. The scientist proposes to replace steel with cast iron with the addition of specific chemical elements.
Sergey Shcherbakov, Doctor of Technical Sciences, Associate Professor, Department of Theoretical and Applied Mechanics of the Belarusian State University:
According to preliminary estimates alone, the economic benefit for Belarus could be about several tens of millions of dollars. And simultaneously it will create several hundred jobs.
Today, the scientist presented the project to the Head of State. Alexander Lukashenko earlier personally instructed the chairman of National Academy of Sciences of Belarus to monitor all the promising developments and implement them in the production. The new technique of rail production may become a breakthrough project, which will bring the entire industry to a new level.
One should not be afraid of innovations if they are justified. At time, the satellite launch, and support the most progressive branches of medicine caused a certain share of skepticism. But today Belarus has already launched a second spacecraft, and more than 40 heart transplant surgeries a year are carried out in our country.
Alexander Lukashenko, Belarus President:
All this was not easy at the start. I had to convince many scholars that if we don't make it, we will wander around in sandals as before. This was a breakthrough. And it created many jobs. Today we manage this satellite. As I am convinced by the head of the Academy of Sciences, the first satellite has already paid off probably two or three times.
Or take nuclear power plants. Do you think it was easy to overcome opposition to this project? But I knew that if we did not take that up, we would not be at a new level of research today.
One of the most promising and ambitious projects in Belarus is the construction of nuclear power plant in Ostrovets. When the NPP works on the power, Belarus will be able to even sell the energy. The President asked how residents perceive the Belarusian "project of the century."
Viktor Averin, Professor, Dean of the Faculty of Biology of the Gomel State University named after Francis Skorina:
Well, of course the majority are for this project in Belarus. But we should actively carry out information work with our neighbors. And in our country, people welcome it because it gives us new technology, new knowledge, the development of the economy. We will be able to better develop human potential.
Alexander Lukashenko talked to scientists for several hours. The conversation turned circumstantial, with many topics touched. In short, science in Belarus will be supported. But the responsibility of scientists will also be high.