President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko proposes to outline the areas to intensify cooperation with Tajikistan, especially against the background of the recent drop in trade turnover.

The Belarusian Telegraph Agency (BelTA) reports that Belarusian leader said this at a meeting with the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Tajikistan to Belarus Bakhtovar Safarzoda. 

"Let's intensify our relations.  We will talk to President of Tajikistan Emomali Rahmon in the near future at the first opportunity to define the directions of intensification of our relations. As an ambassador you are a very active and promising diplomat, I think you will contribute to the development of our relations," the head of state said.

Alexander Lukashenko noted that economy, trade and economic cooperation are the basis for any interstate relations.

“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs reassures me that last year's drop in trade turnover is insignificant and so on.  But I am an economist and I am used to looking at processes in dynamics.  Last year we did not have a significant drop in trade turnover, but it was in the previous year.  And the previous year gave us a decent decrease in turnover. That's why we have reduced trade turnover in general," the Belarusian president stated.

He further stressed that a turnover level of US$70 million, US$80 million or even US$100 million is almost nothing for Belarus and Tajikistan taking into account existing potential.

“We need to look for opportunities to increase trade turnover.  We must decide as we always do.   I am sure Tajikistan will accept such proposals,” said Lukashenko.  “We need to decide on the goods that we can mutually trade and exchange.”  

According to data of the Agency for Statistics under the President of Tajikistan, a two-way trade between Tajikistan and Belarus over the first ten months of last year valued at US$75,632,700, which is 12.8 percent more than in the same period of 2022.  This consisted of Tajikistan’s exports to Belarus estimated at US$5,386,700 and Tajikistan’s imports from Belarus worth US$70,246,000.

Diplomatic relations between Tajikistan and Belarus were established on September 5, 1996 by the exchange of the notes.

The Embassy of Tajikistan has functioned in the Belarus capital, Minsk, since 1997 and the Embassy of Belarus has operated in Dushanbe in Dushanbe since 2011.

At the present stage, Tajik-Belarusian relations are characterized by a high level of development both on a bilateral and multilateral basis.