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Krutoi: Belarus' sustainable development strategy till 2035 should be practical

MINSK (BelTA) – Belarus' national sustainable development strategy for the period till 2035 should be practical in nature, Belarus' Economy Minister Dmitry Krutoi said during a roundtable session “Sustainable development goals and priorities in the context of national interests”. The session was convened to discuss the concept of Belarus' national sustainable development strategy.

“This document should be functional,” Dmitry Krutoi said. He cited a positive example of the Europe 2020 economic development strategy. It is comprehensible and concise (about 8-10 pages) and contains several specific priorities that can be used as a benchmark to assess growth.

“While working on the new document till 2035 we should change the status of this document and its place in the system of the country's development forecasts,” the minister added. He noted that these days the global economic environment is changing so fast that it is hard to include long-term goals into development forecasts for short-term and mid-term perspectives.

According to the minister, while elaborating the new concept of the national sustainable development strategy it is necessary to pay close attention to two major trends: informatization and globalization. “We should have a clear understanding of Belarus' place in these trends,” he noted. Apart from that, GDP growth projections set out in other documents should also be taken into consideration. The GDP is expected to grow on the back of expanding services sector, small and medium-size business, rather than due to the country's industrial giants. The strategy is to incorporate 17 Sustainable Development Goals.

According to Dmitry Krutoi, Belarus' population census to be conducted in 2019 will reveal major trends in regional development, starting from internal and external migration and ending with urbanization processes. The census outcome will help identify the areas of focus.

The National Strategy for Sustainable Social and Economic Development is elaborated once in five years for the 15-year period, 2.5 years prior to the start of the projected period. The strategy sets forth instruments for efficient use of demographic, social, natural, manufacturing and innovative potential of the country. The national sustainable development strategy till 2030 is in place now. It features five strategic priorities; three of them pursue economic goals, one is focused on human development and one is dedicated to environmental conservation.

As was reported earlier, the Economy Ministry should submit the concept of the national sustainable development strategy and methodological recommendations for its elaboration to the central government and some government agencies by 15 December 2018. The draft strategy should be submitted to the Council of Ministers by 1 December 2019.