A new strategy of partnership between Belarus and the World Bank was discussed on March 29 at the Palace of Independence. Emphasis is made on projects in the field of housing, energy and the development of the digital economy.
The Belarus President met with top managers of the World Bank, which is one of the most respected organizations in the international arena. Cooperation with Belarus has intensified in the last seven years.
Currently, the portfolio consists of 9 loans and 4 grants totaling almost $1 billion.
Among other priorities are education, small and medium enterprises, and public finance management. Alexander Lukashenko thanked the World Bank for their help and support in important projects.
Alexander Lukashenko, President of Belarus:
We have implemented an ambitious program with you and are today developing a new plan, a new strategy for our cooperation. This suggests that we have found a common language. But most importantly, Mr. Vice President, is that you, through your actions, give us an alternative in Belarus.
Your work in Belarus enables us to rely not only on 1-2 sources of support for our economy, social projects, budget and so on, but also a very strong support of the World Bank. You would probably agree that if there is no alternative, when you have no choice, then it is very difficult to build economic relationships, to build social policy. When there is a choice and an alternative, then there are more opportunities to come to success.
During our cooperation you have invested in Belarus $1.6 billion dollars, and now the program provides for nearly a billion more.
I want to assure you that if we made a promise, you can rely on us. We firmly fulfilled our promises and will continue to do so.
Kyle Peters, senior vice president of World Bank, Operations:
We have 9 programs in various fields on the agenda worth $1 billion. Among them are water supply, energy, transport, and education. Now we are starting cooperation in the health sector. And I actually was able to see that all programs are being implemented very efficiently.
During the cooperation, the World Bank has invested more than $1.5 billion in a number of significant projects for Belarus. Among the most important are the construction of water supply facilities in various regions and the modernization of boiler-houses and their conversion into mini heat-electric generation plants.