Belarus-China trade close to $2bn in 2008
13 January 2009
In 2008 the trade turnover between Belarus and China approached $2 billion, said Prime Minister of Belarus Sergei Sidorsky as he met with Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of China to Belarus Lu Guicheng in Minsk on January 12.
The Prime Minister said, the development pace of the trade between the countries is truly colossal. While in 1992 the mutual trade stood at only $34 million, in 2008 it reached $2 billion. Over the last two years Belarus-China trade has doubled, he said.
On behalf of the government Sergei Sidorsky congratulated Lu Guicheng on the appointment of China’s ambassador to Belarus. He remarked that Lu Guicheng’s predecessor had done a lot promoting the bilateral cooperation in all areas. Belarus-China cooperation is at a very high level and should be supported, said the Prime Minister.
The Belarusian head of government said, China demonstrates a high pace of economic development. It is especially important during the global financial crisis. The excellent organisation of the Beijing Olympics in 2008 is an example for other countries to follow. “Last year can be named a year of China without an exaggeration,” he said.
According to Sergei Sidorsky, Belarus and China can do their best to expand the accumulated potential of the bilateral cooperation during the global financial crisis. “Our performance on the global market will depend on each other’s support,” he added. The Prime Minister pointed out the high level of the political dialogue between the countries.
In turn, Lu Guicheng underscored that friendly relations between Belarus and China have been rapidly developing in political and economic areas. “We cooperate very productively and have secured major achievements,” underscored the diplomat. China intends to continue expanding cooperation with Belarus. The Ambassador also expressed gratitude for Belarus’ support and humanitarian aid for the earthquake-affected province of China.
The People’s Republic of China is a major foreign trade partner of Belarus. In 2007 China ranked 5th in Belarus’ trade volume, 7th in export and 3rd in import among non-CIS states. In 2007 Belarus-China trade totalled $1.3 billion, 36.6% up on 2006. The export went up 21.6% to $484.65 million, the import — 47.4% up to $815.82 million.
Belarus’ major exports to China are potash fertilisers, caprolactam, rock haulers and spare parts, microchips and chip assemblies, metal products, chemical products, machine tools and instruments. Belarusian Potash Company, Belneftekhim Shanghai Trading, Minsk Tractor Works, Minsk Wheel-Tractor Plant, BelAZ, Integral, Belarusian Steel Works, Gomselmash, Transaviaexport Airlines, Belarusbank, Belarusian Chamber of Commerce and Industry have representative offices in China. From China Belarus mainly imports equipment, components and materials for export-oriented enterprises, consumer goods.
Sessions of the Belarusian-Chinese Intergovernmental Commission for Trade and Economic Cooperation are held regularly. Ten sessions have been held. An intergovernmental agreement on gratuitous aid of the Chinese government to the government of Belarus has been signed.