On February 22nd, talks took place between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Belarusian president Alexander Lukashenko, in Russia’s Sochi.
Putin noted that cooperation is in much needed at different levels, including at the regional level.
“Every year we hold meetings between the heads of regional management structures. This is a very important work, because at the level of regional interaction, a significant volume of our relations have developed, they are developing: these are economic, human ties,” the Russian president said.
He stressed that Russia remains the largest trading partner for the neighboring republic.
“I am pleased to state that the level of interaction, strategic partnership, alliance is confirmed, and Russia remains the largest trade and economic partner of Belarus – about 50 percent, we are the largest investor,” Putin said.
The head of state added that total investments in the Belarusian economy are estimated at more than $4 billion.
According to Lukashenko, almost all roadmaps of interaction between Russia and Belarus are ready for signing. He also noted that the financial assistance that Moscow provided to Minsk was timely and important.
“You should know that we have not thrown money away, we are investing in production, purchasing a huge amount of raw materials and components from Russia, and this volume is growing all the time. If we implement the projects that we have approved, then imports from the Russian Federation will increase significantly,” the Belarusian leader expects.
The presidents also discussed coronavirus vaccines. Lukashenko announced the development of a Belarusian drug based on Russian technologies.
“The most effective vaccine is the Russian one. It is recognized all over the world, no matter how someone trolls it. This is the most effective vaccine,” the president of the republic said.
He noted that without the support of Russia, it would be difficult for the authorities to organize vaccinations. Putin recalled that new consignments of Sputnik V will be delivered to Belarus in February and March.
After the meeting, Putin invited Lukashenko to ski. The Russian president was dressed in a suit with white, red and blue colors. The leaders of the states rolled down the slope, after which they moved to snowmobiles.
A video was also shared of Lukashenko and Putin skiing together, to let off some steam.
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