On March 18 the Belarusian delegation arrived in Jakarta on the first-ever visit by the Belarusian leader to Indonesia. Lukashenka is expected to travel from Indonesia to Singapore on March 20. On what reason is Minsk looking for partners in the Third World countries? Does Belarus stand a chance of having mutually beneficial cooperation with far away countries?
There are about eighty persons on our delegation, including heads of pilot enterprises, e.g. Belkaliy and Belaz. The experts regard the visit in the light of quest of new markets.
VALER KARBALEVICH, POLITICAL ANALYST:
Belarus mainly exports potash fertilizers and tyres to Indonesia; the country also entertains great expectations of custom machinery exports. But the bilateral cooperation in figures is far from being optimistic: last year sales turnover declined twofold.
“Indonesia and Singapore are not able to supply us with cheap oil and gas as well as provide loans as needed; they will not give as such [vast] trade areas as Russia does,” the expert states.
Lukashenka’s Asian trip was preceded by the sittings of the State Council of the Common State in Saint-Petersburg where the Belarusian side met with only limited success.
ANDREY SUZDALTSEV, POLITICAL ANALYST, MOSCOW
“It has become clear that Belarus fails to fulfill another stipulation, i.e.oil products exporting to Russia. They are allegedly exported but the price is higher than the wholesale market offers. As a result, the products are not sold and goes to the EU market,” he said.
Belarus managed to arrange the agreement on the schedule of oil deliveries on their terms (5.75 mln tons in Q22013). But there has been no any “oil contract-2013” yet. Moreover, no one can guarantee that Moscow will provide 2 bln loan for the modernization of Belarusian enterprises.
The main trade partners of Belarus are still Russia and Europe. But nothing ventured, nothing gained; the visit summary can be made at the end of the week.