Belarus and Ukraine will hold the Third Forum of Regions in Grodno, and Belarus has begun the relevant preparations, the Belarusian government’s press service said in a statement. “Consistent with the Belarusian prime minister’s instruction No. 1R dated January 6, an organizing committee has been established to prepare for and to hold the Third Forum of Regions between Belarus and Ukraine in Grodno in 2020. It is headed by Deputy Prime Minister Igor Lyashenko,” the statement said. The organizing committee has been tasked with elaborating and approving the plan of preparations for the event before February 20.
The First Forum of Regions of Belarus and Ukraine took place in Gomel, Belarus, in October 2018, and the Second Forum of Regions was hosted by Zhytomyr, Ukraine, in October 2019. The parties signed commercial contracts with a total value of $140 million and $500 million, respectively.
The Belarusian state petrochemical concern Belneftekhim intends to resume exports of oil products in January, Belneftekhim Deputy CEO Vladimir Sizov said.
“The resumption of [exports of oil products] is expected in January,” the state news agency BelTA quoted Sizov as saying on Saturday.
The resumption of exports “depends on how rhythmically and quickly the contracts are concluded,” he said.
“We expect that all possible restrictions will be lifted by the end of January – at least this is an optimistic scenario,” Sizov said.
Within the framework of the 27th meeting of the Intergovernmental Ukrainian-Belarusian Mixed Commission on Trade and Economic Cooperation, a meeting of co-chairs of the national parts of the Commission and a plenary meeting took place. “The visit of the Belarusian delegation of such level is a real opportunity to continue the dialogue with a view to practical implementation of the urgent tasks of cooperation in all areas of mutual interest for the peoples of our states,” the press service of the Cabinet of Ministers quoted Minister of Energy and Environmental Protection of Ukraine Oleksiy Orzhel as saying on Saturday.
It is noted that the constructive discussions held at expert consultations within the Commission will deepen cooperation between Ukraine and Belarus.
“Cooperation with the Republic of Belarus will ensure the development and functioning of stable and competitive sectors of the economy of our states. Implementation of the agreements will provide an opportunity to strengthen political, trade, economic and cultural ties between our countries,” Orzhel added.
Belarus will export about 2 billion kWh of electricity in 2019, which is almost two times more than in 2018, Deputy Minister of Energy of Belarus Vadim Zakrevsky told reporters in Minsk on Wednesday. “According to the results of the year, the total volume of electricity export can reach 2 billion kWh. In the past, it was about 1 billion kWh. Export could theoretically grow up to 4 billion kWh,” Zakrevsky said.
According to him, this year electricity is exported to the Baltic countries and Ukraine. At the same time, the deputy minister said that Ukraine is a premium market for Belarus in comparison with the Baltic. “The advantage of the benefits in supplying electricity to Ukraine compared to the Baltic is enormous. It is 80 to 20. Now there is such a price for Belarusian energy that it is beneficial for Ukrainians. Belarus does not dump and sells with profit,” the deputy minister said.
Ukraine and Belarus are discussing building new interstate power lines and DC links for existing power lines, the press service of the Ministry of Energy and Environment Protection said after a meeting of the Ukrainian-Belarusian group for cooperation in the fuel and energy sphere. “At the meeting, the issue of building new electric power lines between the neighboring states was discussed. It was about the line between Rivne and Brest regions (Belarus). The issue of building DC links on the existing 330 kV overhead lines between the Belarusian unified power grid and the Ukrainian unified power grid was discussed: Mozyr-Chornobyl NPP and Gomel-Chernihiv,” the press service said.
Minister of Energy and Environment Protection Oleksiy Orzhel said that cooperation between the states in the field of electricity is one of the priority issues in the energy sector.
“Electricity is among the priority issues. Next February, Belarus NPP should start working. There may be an excess of electricity in which we are interested. Although, of course, the capacity of the interstate lines for electricity exchange must be taken into account,” the press service said, citing the minister as saying.
Also during the meeting, the issue of power supply to the border areas was raised, in particular, the involvement of 0.4-110 kV interstate power transmission lines in order to ensure supplies to the border areas under contracts between Belenergo and D.Trading LLC.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky says that trade between Ukraine and Belarus should exceed $6 billion.
“Trade between our countries exceeds $5 billion. I agree with Alexander Grigoryevich [Lukashenko] that we could and should achieve six, eight – we don’t want to stop – billion dollars,” he said at the Second Forum of Regions of Ukraine and Belarus in Zhytomyr on Friday.