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Belarusian machine building companies now offer industrial tours

Imagine: 600 influential people from the OSCE countries will come to Belarus in July. For sure, they will want to eat deliciously, stay in good hotels (thank God, everything is already in order in this aspect), and a rich cultural program is being prepared for them... In a word, this is pure business tourism and also a lucrative incomes for Belarusian tourism sector! The daily expenses of a business traveler (businessman or politician) are three times higher than those of an ordinary traveler. Americans counted that every $1 billion in business tourism turnover leads to the creation of 100,000 new jobs.

Belarus has put serious efforts to improve inbound tourism in recent years. In January, a decision was taken on visa-free entry to Belarus through the Minsk airport for citizens from 80 countries around the world, if they are going to stay up to 5 days. During the first months, 16,000 tourists from 62 countries used this bonus.

In addition to churches, lakes, dranikis and bison hunting, Belarus offers industrial tourism. This is a popular direction of tourism these days. The other day I was very fortunate to visit a cheese factory in the Mogilev region and learn simple but interesting secrets about how cheese is made and how it ripens. What about the opportunity to participate in the assembly of a tractor or a giant BelAZ truck? Yevgeny Pustovoi has more on the topic.

Belarus puts tourism on the conveyor. Literally. We are developing industrial tourism. Natural beauty, authenticity of the national calendar, architecture and its legends. Together with the cleanliness Belarus boasts powerful machine building enterprises.

The average European country in terms of size, Belarus produces every third quarry dump truck and every tenth tractor in the world.

Vitaliy Gritsevich, Deputy Director of the Department of Tourism of the Ministry of Sport and Tourism of the Republic of Belarus:
We have a lot of enterprises. In addition, we put emphasis on modernization of machine building and other industries and this was the foundation of industrial tourism.

Elena Kirdey, director of a travel agency:
BMW is an ordinary car. But BelAZ is unique. It is interesting even for me to see how wheels can have such volume.

American Alex Simpson is connected with the production of the most powerful engines in the world. He knew that "mechanical hearts" made in the USA are used in trucks "Made in Belarus".

Alex Simpson, tourist (USA):
BelAZ! Yes, we also have big vehicles in the US. But they are different. They are suitable only for construction. But your BELAZs are for different tasks. I will definitely tell my friends about these trucks.

BelAZ guides have already held tours on Belarusian trucks for thousands of tourists from about 30 countries. A special tourist route was created at BelAZ.

Now industrial tours are available at about 120 enterprises in Belarus: machine building to crystal production.

Journalists not only talk about industrial tourism, but test these tours themselves. Our colleagues from the Stolichnoe Televidenie company have visited the largest dairy producer of the Mogilev region. Even for the "chef of television cuisine", who tasted national dishes in many countries, Belarusian delicacies proved to be the most delicious.

Yuri Koziyatko, Director General of the Stolichnoe Televidenie company:
We came to talk about the tourism opportunities of Belarus, how good our country is in that aspect and saw good modern production process. Everything is sterile. Almost like space industry. Products are natural. Now we understand why our Belarusian dairy products are loved in many countries.

Olga Burlakova, TV presenter:
I'll come home and buy this wonderful cheese now knowing how it's made. And I think it will be more delicious than before.

As they say, appetite comes with... tours to various enterprises.

Industrial tourism not only enhances the image of Belarusian companies but also contributes to the confidence of consumers and investors. The Department of Tourism gave us an example: Chinese businessmen came to the Orsha Flax Factory as tourists, but eventually became investors.

Vitaly Gritsevich:
We are an export-oriented state. And it's our task to make our industry a point of interest not only in economy, but also in tourism.

National brands are now trendy. For example, MTZ's tractors Belarus are "pulling" an industrial image of the entire country around the world. For Mohammed Keita, Belarus is primarily MTZ tractors.

Mohammed Keita, mechanic, MTZ:
Now my place of work is to assemble the wheels, the cabin. And then the vehicle is ready.

It's interesting that MTZ now offers tourists to assemble tractors.

Alexander Kazakevich, Acting First Deputy General Director of MTZ:
The strategy is diversification of presence in many markets. The element of this strategy is the renewal of the brand, the image of the enterprise.

About 1,500 tourists have visited MTZ since February. Now they also can assemble tractors. Workers say they are not against such "assistance".

MTZ workers:
Under our supervision, why not?

There are enough keys and accessories. We will help! Let them come!

Tourists will have a choice - five operations are available. The quality of their work will be assessed: after all, the Belarusian manufacturer is responsible for his product.

By the way the first application for a tour of MTZ came from Switzerland. The fate of many of the world's industrial giants turned out to be sad. However, in Belarus, Soviet brands have blossomed one more time, already with the patterns of national embroidery, and their names are on foreigners' lips.

Belarusian machine building companies now offer industrial tours