The head of Belarus was cordially welcomed in New Delhi – there were fireworks and horse escort. At the meetings with the leadership of India Alyaksandr Lukashenka called for reaching a new level of the Belarus-India relations – with a view to money matters – in return for giving support on the world scene.
The negotiations between Minsk and New Delhi resulted in signing 10 documents, 6 of which were memorandums of understanding on education, science, culture, agriculture, oil and gas industries as well as on the increase in the supply of potash from Salihorsk. Lukashenka urged them to build the Great India as a new global pole. However, according to him, constructing a science and technology industrial park in Belarus is a necessary step in achieving this goal.
“Great India will not be possible without your presence in the area where Belarus is located, i.e. between the Eurasian Economic Union and the European Union. We are ready to offer you the most profitable favorable conditions for your business’ functioning if you invest in Belarus. We have such experience in relartions with other countries,” the Belarusian leader said.
Indeed, the Chinese-Belarusian Industrial Park was built not far from Minsk.
“Many benefits were given to investors from China. if the same amount of benefits is granted to India, it is not clear whether there will be something in the country that will add funds to the state budget,” economist Leanid Fridkin says.
India has a huge and promising market, but its investment policy is not as active as China’s.
“I am not too sure that Indian investors might be tempted by this offer, they are more focused on their domestic market. Moreover, after the tax reform which began in July, new opportunities have opened up,” Fridkin stresses.
India will develop and diversify economic ties with Belarus. The relevant statement was made by Prime Minister Narendra Moji. The main directions are pharmaceuticals, oil and gas, heavy industry.
Interestingly, Belarusian state-run media failed to publish another statement by Moji: completely disappeared from the Belarusian state-run media.
“We will support the joint development and production in the defense sector in the framework of the Made in India programme,” the Prime Minister of India revealed.
Firstly, in the defense sector, India is actively cooperating with the Belarusian competitor – Russia. Secondly, Belarus resorts to China’s assistance in its defense industry. But China is India’s regional rival, there were even armed border conflicts between them. It is unlikely that Moscow or Beijing will be happy about Belarusian arms with names in Hindu. Hence the secrecy.
Yaraslau Stseshyk, Belsat TV