Belarus president Alyaksandr Lukashenka blasted some Russian media outlets for attacking Belarus in their publications and TV shows.
“Various speculations begin to emerge in mass media. They say that one has deceived the other, that we are kneeling and begging Russia for some things, and so on. We have never knelt to anyone and begged for anything. You know this perfectly well, we have known each other for decades. I would like to say to certain scribblers and TV hosts that Russian parts and raw materials account for 30-90% of all materials in Belarusian devices (tractors, automobiles, the entire machine building or chemical industry),” Lukashenka said during the negotiations with Russia’s Nizhny Novgorod Governor Valery Shantsev on Thursday.
According to him, when the sides were developing the Belarus-Russia Union State, they took a decision to keep the existing economic ties, that is why the economies of the two countries remained interconnected.
Raising the issue of loans to Belarus, the president stressed that Russia was not the main issuer lender.
“The People’s Republic of China is the main one. It has opened a credit line of $15 billion for Belarusian projects. We have not used it in full yet. The main thing is that they do not reproach us for their help,” Lukashenka said and recalled that that the country ‘pays an interest rate of 4.5-6% per annum’ and ‘service these loans on time’.
In his opinion, Belarus and Russia did manage to reach a true compromise while ‘some people’ are trying to put a ‘fly in the ointment’.
In addition, Alyaksandr Lukashenka expressed outrage over Russian journalists’ and public persons’ criticical attitude to the improvement of Belarus-EU relations:
“No one needs us in the West! They already have such things that Belarus can offer. You also know how they see me in the West. Living in the center of Europe, we have to pursue this policy to protect the country, its security, sovereignty, independence and stability, to create normal living conditions for people. We cannot quarrel either with Russia or the West. This is our fate.”