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The Myth of Thriving Belarusian Agriculture
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Agriculture was the fastest growing branch of the Belarusian economy in the first half of 2015. Many in Russia and other post-Soviet countries consider Belarus to be a model when it comes to maintaining a viable agricultural sector. But in...
14 July 2015
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Pro-Russian Maidan, IISEPS National Poll, Media Barometer – Digest of Belarusian Analytics

Is “pro-Russian Maidan” in Belarus possible? Grigory Ioffe agrees with an assumption about such a scenario in Minsk if Lukashenka spoils his relations with Moscow or reneges on some of his promises. BISS Political Media Barometer suggests that the United...

10 July 2015
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Investment Climate in Belarus: Room for Growth

On 9 July General Motors and JV Unison signed an agreement to assemble Chevrolet Tahoe and Cadillac Eskaleyd automobiles in the Minsk region. From the beginning of the year, several international fast food chains have announced a desire to open...

2 June 2015
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Chinese Investment, Forgotten Vitebsk, Forced Labour Hunger Strike – Western Press Digest

As Lukashenka tries to improve ties with his Western counterparts, questions arise as to the merits of this thaw in relations for both parties. Despite the conciliatory tone of US and EU officials, their representatives at the UN Human...

28 April 2015
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Subbotnik With Top Officials, Opposition And The Presidential Elections – Belarus State TV Digest

Did the Americans dismantle the Soviet Union? Did Belarusians benefit from the fall of the Soviet Union at all? These are some of the topics discussed by guests on the “Delo Principa” talk show on state-run ONT TV. A recent...

12 March 2015
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Closer EU Ties, Austerity Reforms, and A Cop Calendar – Western Press Digest

Belarus tries to improve its economy and sends signals to the West that it is ready to carry out reforms to attract investment and secure loans. Besides reforms, Minsk has been pushing state-owned potash producer Belaruskali to win more...

6 February 2015
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Visa Liberalisation, Saving the Economy and Readying Defenses – Western Press Digest

Relations between Russia and Belarus appear to have taken a turn for the worse as the new year begins. As Belarus's economy stumbles, Minsk tries to shore up the Belarusian ruble while simultaneously blaming Moscow for some of its...

5 January 2015
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Lukashenka in Ukraine, Blocking the Internet and Gandalf for President – Western Press Digest

Belarus-Russia tensions continue to grow as the economies of both countries come under more and more stress. Seeking to distance himself from the image of being the Kremlin's vassal, Lukashenka went to Kiev to reaffirm his commitment to help...

4 December 2014
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Belarusians Ousted From the Russian Market, Spongers, Small Business – Belarus State TV Digest

Belarus state TV Channel 1 harshly criticised Belarusian spongers - people who do not wish to work as their fellow citizens do and abuse the nation's welfare system. Aliaksandr Lukashenka made a number of angry statements in response to Russia's...

19 August 2014
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Belarus Hopes To Cash In On Russian Sanctions

Earlier this month, Russia introduced a full embargo on imports of meat, fish, dairy, fruit and vegetables from the European Union (EU), United States, Australia, Canada and Norway. Moscow sought to retaliate for the sanctions imposed by the West following...

12 August 2014
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Thin Wallets, Fat Bodies: Why Belarus Leads Europe on Female Obesity

Only eight McDonalds restaurants operate in Belarus, and fast food remains a rare treat for most residents. Obesity, however, is on the rise. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), Belarus leads Europe in the share of obese and overweight...

16 May 2014
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Belarusian Economic Reforms: An Irresolvable Paradox

Aliaksandr Lukashenka returned from Moscow with victorious news ahead of V-Day. He convinced his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin to issue a new $1.5-2b loan and to agree on a stage-by-stage reduction of oil export duties...

25 March 2014
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West Inspects Belarus’ Borders, Lukashenka Adjusts His Stance on Crimea – Western Press Digest

Belarus’ economy is showing its first signs of vulnerability due to its ties with Russia as its dollar bonds began to drop in value. Lukashenka’s initial critical stance on Russia’s invasion of Crimea develops into an admission that there is...

17 March 2014
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EU Policy Towards Belarus After Crimea Revisited – Belarus Reality Check 2014

On 10 April the Belarus Reality Check took place, hosted by the European Endowment for Democracy in Brussels. This is the third event of this series which involves a number of Western and Belarusian analysts and policy-makers. Previous events took place in

11 March 2014
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Gender Equality, How To Modernize The Belarusian Economy – Belarus Civil Society Digest

The Eastern Europe Studies Centre together with Stefan Batory Foundation invites the public to a discussion on gender equality in Belarus. The project Civic Dialogue hosted a panel discussion on how to modernise the Belarusian...