Belarusian president Alyaksandr Lukashenka has delivered the annual State of the Nation Address on Thursday. Belsat.eu has picked the most interesting moments of his speech.
“Sometimes it is simply disgusting to listen to some of Russia’s biased mouthpieces saying that we are conducting sort of soft Belarusization here that something else is going on here as near as a U-turn.”
The Belarusian leader reiterated that he considers Russians and Belarusians to be ‘brothers’.
“Some media outlets even stoop to slander! It will come to no good since it is a lie! We are one nation; Russians and Belarusians have grown up from the same root. Here, in parliament, half of our MPs must be having Russian blood in their veins!”
At the same time the head of state underlined that the forces in Russia should understand that Belarusians will not be errand boys.
“To be or not to be with Russia? We made our choice on a referendum, and that’s that! Our huge interests lie in Russia, but we also hol dan interest in the high-tech West. For many years we have been pursuing a multi-vector policy. What’s wrong with it? Let’s live in peace!”
Всвязи с кризисом, Лукашенко сократил своё выступление до полутора часов!#agl21
— vital_crusader (@vital_crusader) April 21, 2016
— Наста Пілюгіна (@piliuhina) April 21, 2016
“I cannot deny that some MPs are seeking my suport to be re-elected. This is normal. You should not be ashamed! You are my people, my kids. I will support you.”
“This year the matters related to the improvement of our pension system have received a special public response. Let us admit that we are trailing along at the back in what concerns the pension age and pension reform in general. It should have been decided long time ago. Therefore, there is nothing extraordinary about it. People supported us here.”
“It is needed to eliminate all the so-called legislative obstacles to stimulate the inflow of investments of international financial organizations to the Belarusian economy as soon as possible. In simple terms, it is essential to lift all bureaucratic barriers.”
“It will open doors for many large investors. The development of cooperation with the International Monetary Fund requires close attention. The Belarus-IMF program is not a panacea but an indicator of the openness of our economy.”
“We are lagging behind the advanced countries by the level of productivity, cost of energy, materials, and ultimately the competitiveness of goods and services. To counter threats to our economic security, we must be enterprising and well-organized. We must mobilize all the resources and skills to operate effectively.”
“This year we need at least $1.5 billion in FDI to restore economic growth. This will help us replace the internal resources we lack with the foreign sources, China has opened a credit line worth $8 billion for us and promised as much support as Belarus will need.”
“Having major assembly plants in Belarus, we still import component parts from abroad: chairs, finishing materials, automotive glass, and automotive components. We need to manufacture them here. This is the niche for our entrepreneurs and the area of work of the government.”
“It is necessary to put more efforts into the de-dollarization of the economy. A lot has been done in this regard. When the nation trusts its own currency, saves money using its own currency, it supports the national economy. A lot has been done already to reduce the usage of foreign currencies in transactions inside the country. The banks now offer lucrative terms that allow Belarusians to get real revenues from ruble deposits.”