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MINSK, June 14 (Itar-Tass) – Belarus will take independent decisions on the terms of privatization, President Alexander Lukashenko said Thursday at a meeting with the governor of Russia’s constituent region of Bashkortostan, Rustem Khamitov.
“Belarus is aware of the essence of competition and market economy but it wouldn’t like to replicate the Russian-style privatization of the 1990’s,” President Alexander Lukashenko said Thursday.
Problems of this kind should be settled at the conference table, he said.
“Here are the terms and they’re clear for everyone and if some people are displeased with them, why don’t they stay away from holding talks with us,” Lukashenko said.
“Belarus will have the privatization, indeed, but we reserve the right to deciding on what should be privatized and when and, what’s most important, on what the prices and conditions should be,” he said.
“One more thing I’d like to say is this,” Lukashenko said. “Privatization is not only economics. It also implies big politics and there should be no illusions in this respect.”
“If Russia is scared today that the common market of the common economic space will get filled with cheap forgeries from third countries, then it shouldn’t have take part in its creation,” he said.
“Claims that can be heard around already today break up this very same common economic space,” Lukashenko said in a reaction to a recent statement by the Russian ambassador in Minsk, Alexander Surikov, who spoke on the pace of privatization processes in Belarus.”
“The common economic space was created to make it possible to defend national manufacturers, so that all the actors in this common economic space could act proceeding from the grounds of equality,” he said.
Ambassador Surikov told a reporter recently the Belarussian authorities are reluctant somehow to walk along the pathway of what he called “normal privatization”.
“That’s because politics get mixed up with the economy in this situation, which is covered up with nice phrases like “belonging to the people”, while in reality it doesn’t matter who will purchase the Belarussian industrial facilities – the Russians or the Americans,” he said. “It’s simply important to take the plunge.”