Both parties noted during the talks that to date the level of trade achieved following the signing of a cooperation agreement between Belarus and the Leningrad Region is higher than what Belarus has with a number of partner countries. And, despite the exchange rate differences, the plan is to boost mutual trade to $700 million in the next three years, the regional government reported.
“We have agreed to aim for $700 million,” Mr Kobyakov said at the meeting.
The Belarusian Prime Minister stressed that, along with the socio-economic contacts, Belarus and the Leningrad Region are also moving closer on a personal level, and this visit by a group of the regional officials serves as a good reason to re-negotiate issues, identify potential goals and set off on a “path of sustainable growth” in mutual trade.
“We are actively engaged in logging; the equipment offered by Belarusian manufacturers has a competitive edge compared to others in terms of their “price-quality” ratio, and the variety of products has certainly been a pleasant surprise,” Mr Drozdenko said in turn.
The programme of the Leningrad Region governor’s visit also includes attending the sixth session of the joint commission on cooperation between the Republic of Belarus and the Leningrad Region, a visit to the Amkodor holding company and Belarusian State Museum of the Great Patriotic War.
The cooperation between the Leningrad Region and the Republic of Belarus is regulated by an agreement between the Government of the Leningrad Region and the Belarusian Government on cooperation in trade, economic, science and technology, and cultural cooperation, signed in May 2006, as well as by cooperation agreements with Minsk, Gomel and Vitebsk regions of Belarus.
The partners have also drawn up three-year cooperation programmes to support the implementation of the latest agreement and to identify new promising areas of cooperation. Both sides are currently focused on the programme of trade and economic, science and technology, and humanitarian cooperation between the Government of the Leningrad Region and the Government of the Republic of Belarus for 2013-2015.