08 July 2016
June 2016 became a breakthrough month for the potash industry in Belarus. The state-owned company “Belaruskali” managed to sign two long-awaited contracts with two major potash consumers – India and Bangladesh.
However, the main news came from China: on June 17 Belarus received a $1,4bn loan from the China Development Bank for construction of a new mining and...
29 January 2016
Air Base Suspended, Seeking Support in Asia and Africa, Belarusian Studies – Ostrogorski Centre Digest
In December and January the Ostrogorski Centre analysts are busy analysing Minsk's complicated games in foreign policy and security affairs, finalising the most recent issue of the Journal of Belarusian Studies and organising a conference on Belarusian studies.
It appears that Belarus continues to cooperate with Ukraine on the issues where Belarus can gain financially and...
22 May 2015
On 10-12 May, Chinese president Xi Jinping capped off his Eurasia trip with a visit to Minsk. As during his prior stops in Kazakhstan and Russia, the Chinese leader was sizing up the opportunities, as well as the risks, of deepening ties with countries in the Eurasian Economic Union.
Over the past two decades, Belarus has achieved a high level of confidence in its political relations...
19 September 2014
Few people in the West know that provincial Salihorsk, not Minsk, is the wealthiest town in Belarus.
Belaruskali, responsible for around 10% of Belarusian exports annually, makes Salihorsk the most economically important town in Belarus, outside of Minsk.
Despite its wealth, the town shares similar problems with many other smaller towns in Belarus. Salihorsk remains overly...
08 September 2014
On Sunday, Foreign Minister Uladzimir Makei headed to South Africa and Nigeria for a round of meetings.
After losing its partners in the Middle East and at the time when relations with Latin America are stagnating, Belarus is seeking new trade partners.
This year, Minsk opened four embassies – in Ecuador, Mongolia, Australia and Pakistan. Another one - in Qatar - is...
27 June 2014
Over the past week, state TV Channel 1 covered Alexander Lukashenka’s visits to state enterprises in the regional cities of Salihorsk and Barysau.
In their coverage, state TV journalists reported on the excellent personal connection the head of state had with ordinary Belarusians. They presented him as a politician who has always remained close to peoples’ problems and is...
29 April 2014
This April the National Bank decided to its reduce refinancing rate, which has remained unchanged for the past 10-months. This measure is, to some degree, a helping hand for the real sector that is facing significant difficulties at present. However, despite their best intentions, this move may actually lead to serious imbalances...
04 February 2014
The U.S. presidential administration is looking into a possible security breach to its recently launched healthcare website, with the issue being linked back to Belarus. New allegations have surfaced that European donor aid is financing Belarus’ border police, again raising eyebrows in the United Kingdom.
Journalists from Finland may not attend the World Ice Hockey Tournament if...
03 December 2013
A nearly four month long “potassium war” between Minsk and Moscow has come to its logical conclusion. It has provided another example of Russia provoking Belarus' president and then quietly accommodating him.
As Uralkali manager Vladislav Baumgertner found himself back in Moscow, both Lukashenka and Putin have reason to celebrate their under-the-table potash...
24 October 2013
On the 10 October 2013 the government and the National Bank of Belarus issued a plan for structural reforms of the Belarusian economy aimed to increase its competitiveness.
Faced with major threats to its macroeconomic stability and the unfortunate timing of the potash conflict, the Belarusian government came up with a plan of structural reforms. The plan should...
09 October 2013
A conflict between Belarusian authorities and Russian potash giant Uralkali, by all assessments, comes to its conclusion.
Uralkali CEO Vladislav Baumgartner left his KGB-prison cell for house arrest in a hidden apartment. At the same time, a major owner and shareholder of Uralkali, the latter-day foe of Alexander Lukahenka, Suleiman Kerimov, negotiates the sale of his shares...
26 September 2013
In August and September, the general public's attention was focused on the dispute between Belaruskali and Uralkali, the world's two largest producers of potash fertilisers. The conflict between two economic entities created additional difficulties for the Belarusian potash industry, as well as stimulated lower prices on the global potash market.
At the same time,...