The Tac­tics of Spe­cific Ac­tions

In the next sev­eral years Be­laru­sian SMES will con­trib­ute 50% to the nation’s GDP

Economy of Belarus - - STATE AND BUSINESS - Lilia KRAPIVINA, Econ­omy of Be­larus Mag­a­zine

As you know, the idea of the direc­tive orig­i­nated in the Be­laru­sian busi­ness com­mu­nity, and our union was one of the first pub­lic en­tre­pre­neur­ial or­ga­ni­za­tions who said that such a doc­u­ment was ac­tu­ally nec­es­sary. Why? The process of eco­nomic re­forms did not go smoothly enough; as a mat­ter of fact, it is still rather slow if we take a look at the speed of de­ci­sion-mak­ing by mid-level of­fi­cials. Lib­er­al­iza­tion af­fects the in­ter­ests of a large num­ber of of­fi­cials, which is why any move to elim­i­nate an ad­min­is­tra­tive pro­ce­dure is frowned upon and gen­er­ally treated with sus­pi­cion.

Many of­fi­cials used to say, “We’ll wait and see.” The pace of the en­tire lib­er­al­iza­tion ef­fort was also un­even, as mea­sures that were im­prov­ing the busi­ness en­vi­ron­ment were of­ten cou­pled with the mea­sures that were in fact wors­en­ing it. The Be­laru­sian Union of En­trepreneurs dis­cussed and put for­ward many pro­pos­als on how to im­prove the busi­ness cli­mate, but the im­ple­men­ta­tion of these pro­pos­als was too slow,

as it is known, the year 2011 has been de­clared the Year of Busi­ness ini­tia­tive in Be­larus. the very first days of the year saw the en­force­ment of direc­tive no. 4 “on the En­cour­age­ment of ini­tia­tive and Stim­u­lat­ing Busi­ness ac­tiv­ity in Be­larus.” what are SMES go­ing to do to cap­i­tal­ize on the new op­por­tu­ni­ties? what do they ex­pect from gov­ern­ment bod­ies and what are they go­ing to of­fer back? how are they go­ing to put direc­tive no. 4 in prac­tice? Econ­omy of Be­larus Mag­a­zine has ap­proached the Chair­man of the Be­laru­sian Union of En­trepreneurs, alexan­der Kalinin, for the an­swers to these ques­tions.

hence our gen­uine in­ter­est in Direc­tive No. 4.

This doc­u­ment pro­vides a re­ally good frame­work for fur­ther im­prove­ments in busi­ness con­di­tions in the coun­try and will def­i­nitely con­trib­ute to the as­pi­ra­tions of Be­larus to be listed among the thirty coun­tries with the best busi­ness con­di­tions, ac­cord­ing to the World Bank’s rat­ing.

The adop­tion of the direc­tive was far from smooth ei­ther. As you re­mem­ber, the Pres­i­dent of Be­larus was un­der­scor­ing the im­por­tance of this doc­u­ment in his State of the Nation Ad­dress to the Be­laru­sian Peo­ple and the Na­tional Assem­bly back in April of 2010. But it was not un­til De­cem­ber 31 that the doc­u­ment was ac­tu­ally adopted, lit­er­ally on New Year’s Eve. The direc­tive does af­fect the in­ter­ests of gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials, which is why it holds no al­lure for many. But the re­cent ex­pan­sion of gov­ern­men­tal in­sti­tu­tions is be­com­ing in­creas­ingly hard for the coun­try to han­dle and the direc­tive is aimed at op­ti­miz­ing this process and open new busi­ness growth op­por­tu­ni­ties.

In­deed, to­day you can hear some peo­ple com­plain that the doc­u­ment is not spe­cific enough, rather vague. But we are op­ti­mists and are pre­pared to con­trib­ute to­wards the nation’s eco­nomic growth in the strate­gic ar­eas. As re­cently as on 2 Fe­bru­ary 2011 the coun­try’s lead­ing en­tre­pre­neur­ial or­ga­ni­za­tions, our in­cluded, sent a pack­age of co­or­di­nated pro­pos­als to the Coun­cil of Min­is­ters and the Pres­i­den­tial Ad­min­is­tra­tion, aimed at cre­at­ing a bar­rier-free busi­ness en­vi­ron­ment. It is our hope that these pro­pos­als will be thor­oughly stud­ied and taken into con­sid­er­a­tion.

One of our pri­mary pro­pos­als is to ad­dress price for­ma­tion is­sues. Free en­trepreneur­ship and competition start once these is­sues are duly sorted out. We pro­posed to draw up a new reg­u­la­tory doc­u­ment re­lat­ing to price for­ma­tion in con­form­ity with Direc­tive No. 4. That was how De­cree No. 72 of 25 Fe­bru­ary 2011 ap­peared. The

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