October is likely to report most hires in Belarus in 2016
According to the National Statistics Committee, in October 2016, hires outstripped layoffs by 2 976 people, which is the most net hires in 2016 - mainly due to the seasonal employment by the housing and communal services in connection with the beginning of the heating season and the need to ensure servicing of the heating facilities. In addition, vacancies in education and healthcare have been filled. Meanwhile, in most economic sectors layoffs outpaced hires with industry and construction being in the lead. The IT sector will remain the only economic activity where hires substantially outstrip layoffs. The state programme aiming to create new jobs in the economy is likely to be implemented formally - due to the enlargement of the existing state-owned enterprises. In the remaining two months of 2016, seasonal factors will not apply and layoffs will resume prevalence over hires.
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.