Could Russia Lose Belarus?

  • Lukashenko is expected to ask Putin for financial aid.
  • Belarus and Russia could unify their financial system.
  • There is a possibility for Belarus to join Russia and be part of the Union State.

The President of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko, and the President of Russia, Vladimir Putin, have a scheduled meeting in Sochi next week. It is expected that the talks will include discussions regarding the financial and economic spheres. There is also a possibility to unify the credit operations between Russia and Belarus.

Russia is the largest and most important partner for Belarus both in the political and economic fields. The Treaty on Equal Rights of Citizens between Belarus and Russia was signed in December 1998, covering employment, and access to medical care and education. The two countries constitute the supranational Union State.

In addition, it is clear that President Lukashenko will ask President Putin for financial aid.

Furthermore, President Lukashenko expects to get access to the remaining funds from the $3 billion that were allocated for the construction of the Belarusian NPP.

President Lukashenko also believes that if Russia looses Belarus, it would signal a great danger for Russia.

Nevertheless, President Lukashenko is just trying to get more privileges from Russia. He said that the military doctrine in Minsk is exclusively defensive in nature, and that Belarus is capable of protecting the territories.

“I believe that Belarus will remain an absolute priority for Russia,” President Lukashenko said during the All-Belarusian People’s Assembly. “I am sure that Russia has an honest understanding of our aspirations for cooperation with other countries.”

He added, “our main economic partner and strategic ally has been and will continue to be our Russia. The Russian-Belarusian unity is the key to a peaceful and stable future for the region.”

It should be noted that on February 3rd, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Yury Borisov met with Belarusian Prime Minister Roman Golovchenko in Minsk. According to the Russian Embassy in Moscow, the parties discussed plans to increase the volume of trade between the two countries.

President Lukashenko made a lot of statements which could be classified under the paranoid tendencies. One of the statements was in relation to the Apple iPhone use. According to President Lukashenko, Apple allows Western intelligence to spy on Belarusian citizens. He recommends Belarusians to use only rotary phones.

Additionally, President Lukashenko believes that he is a popular Belarusian leader, when in reality, he is not. However, it does not mean that Svetlana Tichanovskaya actually won the election.

The Union State, also referred to as the Union State of Russia and Belarus, is a supranational union consisting of the Russian Federation and the Republic of Belarus. Interest in the Union itself, from both Russia and Belarus, has waxed and waned repeatedly.

The Belarusian leader thinks Belarus has attractive industries in which to invest. However, given the sanctions and his poor relationship with the West, the only chance Belarus has is the joint ventures with Russia and China.

Moreover, as expected, the West did not recognize the legitimacy of the People’s Assembly held last week.

The European Union’s position entails for the people of Belarus to be able to choose the future of their nation without the repressions or prosecution.

Not surprisingly, the EU delegation boycotted the event, to which it was not invited. At the same time, the statements made during the conference were closely monitored by the West.

Overall, it is clear that President Lukashenko only has a chance to stay in power with the support of the Kremlin. The meeting next week will set the tone for the rest of this year.

There is a possibility for Belarus to join Russia and be part of the Union State. President Lukashenko’s youngest son is already residing in Moscow. Eventually, his father will be relocating to Russia too.

Christina Kitova

I spent most of my professional life in finance, insurance risk management litigation.

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