Not all eggs in one basket: Russia main ally but Belarus aches for developing contacts with West – FM

Belarusian authorities expect the European Union and the USA to fully lift sanctions from the country, Foreign Minister Uladzimir Makey said in an interview with the TV channel Belarus One.

Moreover, Belarus wants to sign a new agreement with the European Union to bolster relations. At the moment, the cooperation is being developed on the basis of the agreements which were signed between the USSR and the European Economic Community, he explained.

According to the diplomat, our country has been interested in the ‘equal and full-fledged dialogue’ with Western partners. The full abolition of restrictive measures should be the next step in this direction, the minister stressed.

In the interview, the TV presenter also referred to warming Belarus-West relations and mentioned the fact that president Lukashenka made his first post-election visit to Asia, not to Russia. He asked Uladzimir Makey whether all this is indicative of any swing in policy and whether one should be concerned about Belarus-Russia ties.

In his turn, the minister admitted Russia’s being Belarus’ main ally and partner. According to him, over 300 joint plans, programmes and agreements were inked by Russia and Belarus. These ties are unbreakable, Makey said.

“You know, it is not OK that 50-60 % of Belarus’ turnover accrue to one certain country. Because sooner or later, it may be some kind of situation which will bring negative consequences for Belarus. Thus, it is quite logical that we have an aspiration to diversify Belarus’ trade, economic and political relations with other countries and build a balanced trade and economic relations with the EU, which is our second most important trade and economic partners, and with far-off countries,” the top official stressed.

At the same time, Belarus is going to develop contacts with Asia, Africa, Latin America, the USA, the EU ‘not at the expense of Russia’, he warned.

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