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Conflict with Russia, the first crypto exchange in the world – digest of Belarusian analytics

Belarus finds itself in another conflict-in-progress with Russia, with a growing wave of Russian information attacks on Belarus. Belarus lifts restrictions on the number of US diplomats in Minsk, however, a breakthrough in Belarus-USA relations remains unlikely. Belarus’s economic...

Belarus finds itself in another conflict-in-progress with Russia, with a growing wave of Russian information attacks on Belarus. Belarus lifts restrictions on the number of US diplomats in Minsk, however, a breakthrough in Belarus-USA relations remains unlikely.

Belarus’s economic growth will slow down in 2019/2021. Belarus has got potential for reducing the generation of waste and expanding the substitution of primary resources with secondary raw materials.

World’s first crypto exchange launched in Belarus. Belarusian opened a hostel at the foot of a nuclear power plant. Belarus allows foreigners to register online. Minsk airport tops World’s Most Punctual Airports.

This and more in the new digest of Belarusian analytics.

Politics

Belarus and Russia Dispute the Fundamentals of Their Relationship – Yauheni Preiherman notes that over the past several months, Belarus has found itself in yet another conflict-in-progress with Russia, with a growing wave of Russian information attacks on Belarus. The analyst believes that relations with Russia are absolutely crucial for Minsk and will remain so for a long time and under any government. But Belarus is not going to trade its sovereignty to preserve the status quo in relations.

Belarus – US: There Will Be No Breakthrough. Blitz Comment #1 – Andrei Kazakevich comments on a recent report on the lifting of restrictions on the number of US diplomats in Minsk. He believes that the full-fledged work of the embassy will expand the relations between countries but doesn’t mean qualitative changes. The Blitz-Comment is a new joint analytical project of BISS and Nashe Mnenie expert community.

Is Annexation of Belarus Really Imminent? – Belarus is not a former Soviet republic, Edward Lucas, a reputed British writer and security policy expert, stated in an interview with Belsat TV. He reduced the likelihood of a dramatic scenario in Belarus-Russia relations and noted positive changes in the country.

Belarus’s Foreign Minister Uladzimir Makei. Source: tut.by

Economics

Business self-regulation in Belarus: the case of advertising business – from declaration to implementation. Nikita Belyaev and Evgeny Mordosevich from Liberal Club research business self-regulation in Belarus on the case-study of the advertising business.  To ensure the promotion
of self-regulation in the Republic of Belarus as a whole, it is necessary to develop a form of incorporation for the self-regulatory organization.

Effectuation processes, gender, innovativeness and performance of SMEs: the case of Belarus. Maryia Akulava from BEROC explores the link between the applied effectuation principles, the gender of the leader and SMEs financial and innovative functioning on the Belarusian example. The findings also clearly indicate women being more prone to the hybrid decision-making strategy than men.

World Bank: Belarus’ economic growth will slow down in 2019/2021. According to the data in Global Economic Prospects report, the annual growth rate for Belarusian economy may slow down to 2.7% in 2019 and down to 2.5% in 2020/21. The lack of structural reforms may leave to increased political uncertainty.

Human rights

Authorities Performing Balancing Act Between Their Interests and Human Rights – Valyantsin Stefanovich, HRC Viasna, notes that the number of politically motivated criminal cases went down in 2018 but this may be due to the lack of important political events. This year, 18 people became the targets of politically motivated

UN: Prisoner executions in Belarus ‘simply unacceptable’. The continued use of the death penalty in Belarus has been condemned by an authoritative UN rights body after three men were reportedly executed there, despite its requests for clemency. Belarus remains the last country in Europe and Central Asia that applies the death penalty.

Sweep. Green Light for Some, Red Cards for Others – Yanina Melnikava, MediaKritika, overviews the rapid change of the Belarusian information space. The journalist points to the prosecution of the leading online resources, the introduction of mandatory user authorization, the emergence of Russian actors on the market that can result in serious consequences not only for the media sector but also for national security in general.

Security

Can Russia Devour Belarus? Really? – The conflict between Minsk and Moscow about the tax manoeuvre gives rise to fears that Russia is preparing to join Belarus. Several articles on this topic appeared in major Western media like The Washington PostBloombergIndependent. In the TUT.BY new video project Chewed, Artyom Shraibman convinces that it’s too early for supporters of Belarus’s independence to panic.

Belarus Inside the Bear Hug. And Its Geopolitical Predicament After the Ukraine Crisis – Aliaksei Kazharski, PONARS, in his policy memo notes that the 2014 crisis between Russia and Ukraine has produced new security concerns in Minsk related to a hypothetical Russian intervention and occupation of Belarus. But the crisis has also allowed Minsk to reap some short-term diplomatic benefits and improve its image in the West.

New Union State Military Doctrine Will Not Change Status Quo in Belarusian-Russian Military Alliance – Arseny Sivistky doesn’t believe that a new Military Doctrine of the Union State of Russia and Belarus will include provisions for the establishment of a Russian military base on Belarusian soil. But what is almost certain is that Minsk will seek to exercise its veto power to block the adoption of any political and military decisions inconsistent with its national interests.

Other

World’s first crypto exchange launched in Belarus. Currency.com platform allows traders to buy shares, gold, foreign exchange and other traditional assets with cryptocurrencies from Belarus and other countries. The project was launched by two investment companies led by Viktor Prokopenya and Said Gutseriev.

Belarusian opened a hostel at the foot of a nuclear power plant. 18 km from Astravets town. The hostel is in demand among workers who are building the first Belarusian nuclear power plant. The hostel manager is confident that the place is safe, because “the degree of protection against radiation is very strong”.

Inside Minsk Airport. Source: airport.by

Belarus allows foreigners to register online. Foreigners arriving in Belarus can register online and free starting January 2, 2019. Thus, foreign visitors to Belarus are no longer obliged to visit registration offices in person. The registration of tourists can be done through the unified portal of e-services within 5 business days after arrival.

Minsk airport tops World’s Most Punctual Airports, according to Punctuality League for 2019. Minsk National Airport claimed the first place in the category of the best-performing small airports (2.5-5 million seats) with 92.35% of flights arrived or departed on time. ‘On-time’ is defined as departures and arrivals that take place strictly less than 15 minutes after schedule.

Belarus Digest prepared this overview on the basis of materials provided by Pact. This digest attempts to give a richer picture of the recent political and civil society events in Belarus. It often goes beyond the hot stories already available in English-language media.

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