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Lukashenko wants national exhibition center built by 2021

MINSK (BelTA) – A national exhibition center needs to be built in Belarus by 2021, Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko said as he heard a report on the construction of such a center, BelTA has learned.

The president stressed that exhibition activity is a very serious and important matter for Belarus, and the country needs a national exhibition center. “Any country needs such an exhibition center. In today's world, it is impossible to promote trade without exhibitions and similar events. It is even more important for an export oriented country. We have been talking about this for a while. I instructed to work through the matters related to exhibition activity and construction of a national center in compliance with the latest requirements. But this has taken too long. Let us make a decision and have this center built by 2021,” the head of state noted.

Aleksandr Lukashenko also noted that exhibition events should be many and effective. He therefore asked to mull over the establishment of a unified system of exhibition activity and the constriction of an expo center. “All proposals are welcome. The decision on the first matter needs to be made in the first half of 2019. The decision on the second matter is pending too. We need to start the construction of the center,” the Belarusian leader noted.

With regard to the national exhibition center, the president wants it to be functional, without excesses. “We need no extravaganza. This should be a functional center incorporating all necessary facilities and premises for hosting such activities. The project should not be expensive. Of course, the center should be beautiful but should not cost a fortune. It needs to be simple, beautiful and of high quality. Please, work out a project proposal and submit it to me for consideration,” the Belarusian leader said.

First Vice Premier Aleksandr Turchin stated that the national exhibition center project has been discussed for more than ten years already. Different proposals, construction sites and sources of financing were considered.

The country hosts more than 100 exhibitions annually. They cover different sectors of economy, including industry, agriculture, construction, IT, and tourism. Many of them are regular international events. The largest of them are Belagro, Budexpo, Prodexpo, TIBO, and MILEX. In 2018, a total of 209 exhibitions and fairs were held in the country and, mainly, in Minsk.

Belarus' market of exhibition services is run by eight operators with extensive knowledge in the organization of international exhibitions: Belexpo National Exhibition Center, Minskexpo, Technics and Communications, Expoforum, Exposystems, Belinterexpo, Makbel, and Expolist. The exhibition infrastructure includes Belexpo Pavilion in 14 Pobeditelei Avenue in Minsk, the exhibition center of the China-Belarus industrial park Great Stone, premises designed to host exhibitions (Football Center, Palace of Sports, Minsk Arena, Chizhovka Arena), culture centers, shopping centers, conference halls and hotels.