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15 May 2010

Belarus-EU technical cooperation program can be implemented in Gomel Oblast

GOMEL, 15 May (BelTA) – The Belarus-EU technical cooperation program can be implemented in the Gomel Oblast, Vladimir Serpikov, the deputy head of the European department, the head of the European cooperation department of the Belarus Foreign Ministry, told reporters in Gomel on 14 May. Vladimir Serpikov attended the seminar organized within the framework of the international BRIDGE project aimed at promoting cooperation between the EU member countries and Belarus, Russia, Moldova and Ukraine, BelTA has learnt. The new technical cooperation program, which will be launched in Belarus in the near future, is aimed at leveling the social infrastructures and other standards. According to Vladimir Serpikov, recently the Belarus-EU cooperation has been developing actively. Europe is one of the most important trade and economic partners of Belarus (44% of the Belarusian export). Belarus and the European Union cooperate at the regional level as well including the trans-border cooperation projects, Baltic Sea Region, Poland-Ukraine-Belarus, and others. At the same time, the regional cooperation requires more activity of the local authorities including the authorities of the Gomel Oblast. The European Union allocates huge grants to implement these projects (Poland-Belarus-Ukraine Project – around ?180 million, Baltic Sea Region Project – around ?22 million). It is necessary to use these funds efficiently carrying out these projects in line with Belarus’ legislation, the official noted. Owing these funds we may develop tourist industry, improve standards and etc. more actively, he added. The BRIDGE Project was developed and coordinated by the Institute for Ethnic and Regional Studies (ISCOMET, Maribor, Slovenia). Project’s partners are universities of Belarus, Slovenia, Moldova, Ukraine, Russia, Romania, Italy and Germany. The project is financed by the European Commission. It includes a number of seminars, conferences and training programs for representatives of civil society and government employees of the participating countries.

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