Some Tons of Belarusian Socks?

Global economic crisis demands new extensive measures. Belarusian authorities as always come up with fresh, innovative ideas.

Agriculture in Belarus is loss-making but the authorities are still proud of it. Within the next five years the modernisation of the whole industry is to be sped up to reach the European level of production. The new 2011-2015 rural development programme is aimed at increasing the efficiency of farming and reaching a profitability rate of 25 to 30 percent:

Homyel region which borders on Lithuania and Poland already suggested selling stones to EU. Why not? We have abundance of those on our fields. The pain will be just to collect and wash them. The product made in Belarus is export ready.

But the best idea however belongs to the government. The power-wielding structures - Ministry of Internal, KGB (!), Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Emergency Situations (!), Defence Ministry, State Customs Committee - received a list with recommended number of tons of Belarusian goods to be sold to the respective ministries abroad by the end of the year. There's everything on the list: Belarusian sweets, furniture, tracksuits, rubber shoes, TV-sets, fridges: Luckily no stones.

State Customs Committee for eg. is expected to sell 700 tons of beetroot a carrot, 200 tons of sausage, 40 000 shirts, 50 000 boxers, etc. KGB officers have it easier, their list is almost 5 times smaller. But not that of the Ministry of Defence, they have to find a purchaser for the furniture (equivalent to 23 million dollars); 11,5 tons of cheese and cottage cheese; 2,15 tonsof sausage. Hope, they will have time and resources for the rest of the duties.

Customs Committee head Alyaksandr Shpilewski explained the recommendation was not really about selling the goods, but helping Belarusian enterprises find contacts and partners abroad.

So, has the list been prepared for power departments for them to force their counterparts buy Belarusian products? Or the other way round: their strategy will be forcibly pleading for sympathy? "A couple tons of Belarusian socks, please?: Pleeeease! Oh, pleeeease!"

You never know which could work better in these difficult times.



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