Belneftehim pegged domestic fuel costs to US Dollar
On September 8th, a new indexing mechanism for fuel retail price was published.
The base petrol brand has been set to AI92-K5-Euro at USD 1 per litre. In Belarus fuel costs will only rise, regardless of the world fuel prices (there is no mechanism for reducing the cost of fuel). Therefore, Belarus’ refineries will increase budgetary proceeds, people and businesses will reduce fuel consumption, and foreign carriers will partially lose interest in Belarusian fuel. The excise tax on fuel will continue to rise. If Russia changes taxation in the oil refining business, Belarus might also have to adapt by making changes.
The Belarusian authorities regard the Catholic conference as yet another international event to promote Minsk as a global negotiating platform. Minsk’s proposal to organise a meeting between the Roman-Catholic Church and the Russian Orthodox Church is rather an image-making undertaking than a serious intention. However, the authorities could somewhat extend the opportunities for the Roman-Catholic Church in Belarus due to developing contacts with the Catholic world.
Minsk is attempting to lay out a mosaic from various international religious, political and sportive events to shape a positive image of Belarus for promoting the Helsinki 2.0 idea.
Belarus’ invitation to the head of the Holy See for a meeting with the Patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church should be regarded as a continuation of her foreign policy efforts in shaping Minsk’s peacekeeping image and enhancing Belarus’ international weight. The Belarusian authorities are aware that their initiative is unlikely to find supporters among the leadership of the Russian Orthodox Church in Moscow. In Russia, isolationist sentiments prevail.
In addition, for domestic audiences, the authorities make up for the lack of tangible economic growth with demonstrations of growth in Minsk’s authority at international level through providing a platform for religious, sportive and other dialogues.