31 Aug 2010 18:58

Belarus needs alternative hydrocarbon suppliers

MINSK. Aug 31 (Interfax) - Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko said the supply of hydrocarbon resources is an issue of the country's sovereignty and independence.

"The processing and supply of hydrocarbons for internal needs and export, and the supply of hydrocarbons to our state, are key issues for Belarus as an independent and sovereign state," Lukashenko said during a visit to the Mozyr Oil Processing Plant on Monday.

"We will give a lot of attention to this. It is an important area of our work. We should find a way out of this situation with honor and dignity, like in agriculture," Lukashenko said.

"And we have found it," he said.

"We have come out of the situation in which Russia put us in at the beginning of this year," Lukashenko said.

"I want to reiterate that we are not going to 'go to war' with Russia in all areas. We do not need any wars or complications, However, we should operate under the assumption that there should be alternatives everywhere, including in the supply of hydrocarbons," Lukashenko said.

"Belarusian oil processing plants have managed to get out of this difficult situation in which we found ourselves as a result of the Russian government's policy," Lukashenko said.

"However, I have to say that oil processing plants have done a lot for that. Even if we keep up this level, the next year will go okay," he said.

"However, I want to reiterate that we cannot hope for Russia to maintain this policy. We need to continue working on foreign markets," Lukashenko said.