15 August 2016
On 7 August 2016 the Minister of Agriculture and Food of Belarus Leanid Zayats announced that the country received $11m per day between January and June 2016 for exporting its agricultural products; this accounted for 18 per cent of all Belarusian exports.
Moreover, according to national statistics Belarus has become the third largest world exporter of butter and powdered milk, as well...
04 July 2016
Belarus is one of the world's top 10 butter producing countries.
However, such an achievement comes at a price - every year the agricultural sector in Belarus requires at least $750m on average in government subsidies. This is more than the Belarusian army, police force, health care sector and education budgets all together, according to the Polskie Radio
Today, even in...
10 December 2015
Belarus rejects accusations from Ukraine officials claiming that it has joined the Russian food embargo against Ukraine. Visa facilitation between the EU and Belarusan is likely to succeed, but the extent of the programme will depend on Belarus' commitment to reform.
The Belarusian agricultural sector suffers from lobbyists who constantly force the government to raise tariffs and...
23 April 2015
The Belarusian authorities have strived to maintain what they view as the best features of the Soviet past. Twenty years after collapse of the Soviet Union, well-decorated bulletin boards celebrate the accomplishments of overachieving workers in state enterprises, voluntary neighbourhood clean-up days (Subotniki) remain obligatory for all state employees, and a lavish festival (Daszynki) marks...
31 March 2015
On 25 February the local government of the Belarusian town of Kruhlaje announced that its residents will have an obligatory unpaid day of work. The authorities still are trying to collect money for the annual Dažynki festival, since the financing from the state budget was cut back in 2014.
In 1990s the authorities decided to turn a folk harvesting holiday into a magnificent festival, to...
10 October 2014
Belarus Digest is launching a new series, Belarus Photo Digest, which shows images of different aspects of life in today's Belarus. In the first issue photographer Siarhiej Leskiec documents everyday life in the Belarusian countryside.
Only one in four Belarusians lives in rural areas today. And yet, most Belarusians are first-generation city dwellers. This is all the more...
12 September 2014
On 9 September chief of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees mission in Ukraine, Belarus and Moldova Oldrich Andrysek reported that Belarus accepted more than 25,000 Ukrainian citizens over the last two months.
In 2013, only 2,200 Ukrainians made their way to Belarus to live, according to the official statistics. Earlier, on 6 September Aliaksandr Lukashenka in an interview to...
02 July 2014
The economy of Belarus is showing signs of rising levels of output with most industries increasing their overall output figures throughout May. At the same time foreign and domestic investment demand are exhibiting signs of recovery.
However, this recovery does not itself necessarily signal a return to high output growth. The growth rate is likely to remain weak in the coming months...
10 June 2014
On 27 May Lukashenka announced several radical initiatives that would virtually introduce serfdom into the nation's state-run farms. Two weeks later it remains unclear how serious Lukashenka was but the authorities like to resort to drastic administrative policies to regulate the economy.
In 2012, the government introduced...
13 December 2012
Post-Soviet mass discourse often portrays Belarus as a country of villagers. A big deal of that comes from the image of president Lukashenka himself. He has been director of a farm in Eastern Belarus before going into high politics and is famous for his obsession with agricultural issues. This, however, did not help Belarus farming to turn into a thriving industry...
03 October 2012
Seventy years ago, on 4 October 1942 German authorities organised Dazhynki festival in Minsk. It was the first time the festival took place in Belarus with the highest level of state support.
On 21 September 2012 Aleksandr Lukashenka was opening a Dazhynki festival in Gorki, a small town in Eastern Belarus. Dazhynki is a traditional Eastern European celebration...
20 January 2012
Last autumn when Belarusian rock band IQ48 approached a regional TV channel, its editors told the musicians that their song contained unacceptable political hints. The editors in western Belarusian city of Maladzechna interpreted the original Belarusian words of the song “And let Mickey Mouse hang in the fridge” as a hint to the Belarus president who is a known...