Serbia, Belarus sign free trade agreement

Serbian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Economy and Regional Development Mladjan Dinkic and Foreign Minister of Belarus Sergei Martynov signed today a free trade agreement between Serbia and Belarus which envisages mutual removal of the customs duty and other taxes.

After the signing of the agreement in Minsk, Dinkic said that the free trade agreement with Belarus is very important because it will allow Serbia to export goods to a large market.

He said that foreign investors who establish production in Serbia will have the same advantages, adding that this will increase Serbia's exports.

The Minister said that Serbia's strategy in the coming period will be to become one of the most attractive countries for setting up production for export without customs duty to other countries.

The free trade agreement between Serbia and Belarus envisages mutual removal of the customs duty and other taxes for all products subject to these taxes, except sugar, alcohol, cigarettes, used cars, buses and tyres, which will continue to be subject to taxation when exported.

Dinkic and Interior Minister of Belarus Vladimir Naumov signed today in Minsk an interstate agreement concerning the temporary employment of citizens of both countries in order to protect their interests while working in the other country.

During his visit to Minsk Dinkic also met with President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko and also held meetings at the Ministry of Economy, the Chamber of Commerce and with Minsk city officials.

At the meeting Dinkic and Lukashenko agreed to set up a business council to enable speedier communication and cooperation between businessmen from the two countries.

Serbia's trade with Belarus has been on the increase in the past several years and the current figure of .8 million does not meet Serbia's needs.

First Deputy Prime Minister of Belarus Vladimir Semashko said that the agreements signed today will increase the volume of cooperation and trade exchange, stressing that the foundation of the business cooperation council, as well as the renewed work of the mixed committee, will improve the relations between the two countries.

Semashko emphasised that Belarus is interested in joint investments in the energy sector, telecommunications and agriculture, as well as that it plans to considerably improve housing construction before 2011.

The Serbian delegation today visited the tractor factory Minsk Tractor Works (MTZ) factory and held a meeting with factory executives.

Following the meeting Dinkic stated that they discussed possibilities of join production of tractors in Belgrade at the facilities of the motor and tractor factory IMT, announcing that an MTZ delegation will visit Belgrade in the next two weeks.

We could produce very good tractors in line with all European standards and export them to underdeveloped countries, concluded Dinkic.



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