The European Union has put forward conditions for receiving financial assistance
By Dzianis Melyantsou
Earlier it was reported that the EU would allocate EUR 60 million for Belarus to address the coronavirus outbreak. Last week, it became known that the EU assistance had been contingent on the implementation of the World Health Organization (WHO) recommendations by Minsk.
The conditions were put forward by the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign and Security Policy Josep Borrell. Deputy Director-General of the European Commission's European Neighborhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations Department, Katarina Mathernova, said the EU had increased the support for the media and civil society in the Eastern Partnership countries, as they had become “extremely important during this crisis closely monitoring the authorities’ actions”.
According to Belstat data, Belarus-EU trade shrank by 16.2% to USD 1 billion 663.2 million in January-February 2020. Exports of goods to the EU fell by 28.5% to USD 751.8 million, imports by 2.3% to USD 911.4 million. The negative foreign trade balance in goods totaled USD 159.6 million.
On April 29th, Belarusian Foreign Minister Makei had a telephone conversation with Norwegian Foreign Minister Ine Marie Eriksen Søreide. Among other things, the parties discussed cooperation within the UN, joint efforts to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, bilateral trade, and economic cooperation and legal frameworks for cooperation.
On the same day, Deputy Foreign Minister Krauchanka held a telephone conversation with the Commissioner for Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia of the Federal Foreign Office of the Federal Republic of Germany, Michael Siebert, to discuss the work of the Belarus-Germany Strategic Advisory Group, bilateral cooperation, and Belarus-EU dialogue.