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Belarus-Russia trade will gain momentum in H2 2013, Kudasov says

MINSK, 24 May (BelTA) – The Belarus-Russia trade will increase in the second half of 2013, Deputy Economy Minister of Belarus Anton Kudasov told the media commenting on the decrease in Belarus’ trade with the countries of the Single Economic Space, BelTA learned.

“We expect the trade with Russia to increase by the end of 2013,” said Anton Kudasov. The Q1 results do not suggest that the market is declining. The first and second quarters in trade with Russia are traditionally characterized by a seasonal factor,” he said. The Russian statistical service says the same. Traditionally, the January and May holidays in Russia have an impact on the trade. Therefore, there is a substantial gap in trade figures in the first and last quarters of a year.

In addition, there are a number of macro factors, which, according to our colleagues, will fuel the momentum starting from the third quarter,” said the Deputy Minister. Anton Kudasov stressed that the trade flows are monitored including by the Eurasian Economic Commission. “We keep track of the situation, where the trade is not smooth, which external factors have an impact. We communicate this information and work out the solutions,” he said.

According to First Deputy Foreign Minister of Belarus Alexander Mikhnevich, no measures have been taken that could have led to a reduction in trade in the Customs Union. “Any attempts to shy away from free competition and unified principles of the competitive policy are stopped in the Customs Union member states,” he said.

“The Single Economic Space is a long-playing project. It can not provide quick results,” the official said. At the same time Alexander Mikhnevich acknowledged a certain decline in exports. “But if it were not for the Single Economic Space, it would have been 10 times worse,” he said.

Alexander Mikhnevich also noted that the trade was very high in the previous year. “I believe that thanks to our efforts the growth in exports to Russia will meet the expectations, i.e. 119%, by the end of this year,” he said. It will be reached through closer cooperation with the regions of Russia and Kazakhstan. The First Deputy Minister cited Amur Oblast, the Russian Federation, with which Belarus had concrete future supplies contracts.