Bulgaria‘s new ambassador to Belarus Georgi Vasilev visited BIA today and spoke with the Association’s President Radosvet Radev and Director of International Economic Relations Center Veselin Iliev. The three discussed the possibilities for partnership in terms of improving the foreign economic relations between the two countries.
According to Georgi Vassilev, it is important to generate and develop the interest of Bulgarian companies towards the Belarusian market. There are all prerequisites for successful partnership - a comparable economic structure, a similar nation-psychology, and traditions in relations in the field of culture, sports and tourism. Nevertheless, the Bulgarian business is still shy and needs activation to move from political talk to real mutually beneficial economic cooperation.
Currently, Bulgarian investments in Belarus are modest. According to data from the Ministry of Economy, trade between Bulgaria and Belarus amounts to 97 million, but according to Belarusian statistics it is 157 million. “The difference is due to the origin of the goods and must be controlled by the Bulgarian business - there is a market that someone else owns at our expense. We must not let the two nations diverge,” said Georgi Vassilev.
The economic spheres with untapped potential in which bilateral economic relations can develop are medicine, tourism, transport, IT, food and beverage industries, etc.
Many Bulgarian companies take part in exhibitions in the field of medicine and pharmacy in Belarus. An interesting fact is that some of the world’s best hackers are Belarusians - this is mainly due to the very high quality of education in the country, which is a prerequisite for cooperation in the sphere of information technologies. During the summer there is daily bus transport between Minsk and Varna and Bourgas, as well as regular charter flights, which raises the tourist interest in the country.
Opportunities for business meetings between entrepreneurs, purposeful business delegations and active work that are mutually beneficial to both parties are foreseen.
Mr. Vasilev is expected to take office officially in July 2019.