Belarus - Despite the crisis the rate of the Belarusian-Russian trade turnover has been gradually growing

Prime Minister of Belarus Sergei Sidorsky expressed concern over the plunging Belarusian-Russian trade turnover as he met with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in the Moscow region residence of Nova-Ogarevo on 6 October.

In January-August 2009 the trade between Belarus and Russia shrank by more than 40%, stated the Belarusian Premier. In his opinion, the present trade has shrunk to the level registered in 2005. Meanwhile, the GDP reduction in the two countries is considerably lower and the status of the Belarusian and Russian economies inspires optimism.

Along with mutual trade the Belarusian head of government suggested discussing several current issues, including oil supplies. Sergei Sidorsky said that Belarus had developed a program for cooperation with Russia in fuel and energy industry. The Russian side is currently considering the program.

In addition, according to the Belarusian Premier, the sides are supposed to discuss the matters that will be included into the agenda of the next session of the Union State Council of Ministers.

A session of the Union State Council of Ministers will be held in Moscow in late October, Russian Prime minister Vladimir Putin said during a meeting with his Belarusian counterpart Sergei Sidorsky.

A session of the Supreme State Council of the Union State is scheduled for December, Vladimir Putin added.

"Today we have an opportunity to exchange the information about how the economic cooperation has been developing between Belarus and Russia," Vladimir Putin said. According to him, despite the crisis the rate of the Belarusian-Russian trade turnover has been gradually growing.

Vladimir Putin underlined that Belarus is Russia's biggest supplier of a range of goods, first of all, farm products. According to the decision taken by the Russian government, Belarusian and Russian suppliers will have equal access state procurement contracts.



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