New Goskomvoenprom head is unlikely to pursue fundamental alterations in the military industry’s operations
By Andrei Parotnikau
Activities of the Belarusian defense industry serve to accomplish tasks set by Lukashenka personally and outlined in program documents, which ensure the stability in the State Military-Industrial Commission’s operations.
On June 4th, 2020, the president appointed Raman Halauchenka, the state Military Industry Commission Head, to lead the Belarusian Government and his Deputy Dzmitry Pantus, as the new Military Industry Commission (Goskomvoenprom) head.
Unlike his former boss with a military background, Pantus has made a career in the civilian industry. Judging by his reports at departmental meetings, Pantus was responsible for the production process.
A change in the Goskomvoenprom leadership will not lead to fundamental changes in the state’s military-technical policy. The Belarusian defense industry will develop by the existing plans, without any fundamental changes in national priorities, which were identified based on economic needs (Lukashenka’s requirement to increase defense exports to USD 2 billion), the real needs of the national defense sector and Belarus’ international heft (missile weapons, satellite communications systems and UAVs).
The military industry’s lobbying capacities are likely to somewhat increase in terms of greater state support for the modernization of production capacities and providing more funding for scientific and technical research on security matters. That said, the 2020 budget envisages less than USD 300k for basic research at Goskomvoenprom, i.e. nothing.