The economy of the country and its national security depend on the power and reliability of Belarusian energy sector enterprises, Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko said at the meeting held on 13 August to discuss topical issues of the fuel and energy complex, BelTA informs.
“Let's try to see the full picture of the current operation and development prospects of this strategic industry – the fuel and energy complex. The entire economy and national security of our country depend on their reliability and power. The events of late 2019 and early 2020 showed it when we had to fight for a barrel of oil and a cubic meter of gas, which are now in plenty on the market,” Aleksandr Lukashenko stressed.
The president remarked that the state had invested a lot of money in the modernization of the energy sector, including oil refineries. Right now these enterprises are as technologically advanced as enterprises in leading European countries. “Similar enterprises in Europe have the same technological level as our enterprises,” he said.
On commissioning the Belarusian nuclear power plant
“We are currently implementing the biggest investment project in the country's history, which is the construction of the Belarusian nuclear power plant. The construction of the first power-generating unit has been completed. Another crucial stage is still ahead – it is the inclusion of the nuclear power plant in the energy system of the country and the operation of the first power-generating unit at full capacity,” the head of state noted. According to Aleksandr Lukashenko, he is going to visit the Belarusian nuclear power plant and to take part in the inauguration ceremony.
He asked Energy Minister Viktor Karankevich about the readiness of the existing infrastructure to work in new conditions, about tariff forecasts and the possibility to reduce them for all categories of consumers. “This pertains to electricity,” the president specified.
The head of state also addressed the government. In particular, he asked how the additional volume of electricity which will emerge in Belarus soon will be used. “Who will buy it and how will we use it? What are the prospects of electricity export?” Aleksandr Lukashenko wondered.
On developing the petrochemical industry
The president also remarked that the modernization of Belarusian oil refineries – Naftan and Mozyr Oil Refinery - will be completed soon. He asked Chairman of Belneftekhim Concern Andrei Rybakov to report on the forecasts of the delivery and processing of oil by the end of the year and on the plans for 2021, on the stability of agreements concerning the alternative delivery of oil and gas to Belarus.
Another issue on the agenda is the development of infrastructure for the storage of oil and oil products. “What is the progress in the construction of a link between oil refineries? What is the progress in the modernization of these plants?” the head of state wondered. “We have specified the terms. Naftan should get new products in a month. I want to see these products with my own eyes. Welding works and installation of high-pressure pipelines should be completed at Mozyr Oil Refinery at the same time. What is the state of affairs here?”
Aleksandr Lukashenko added that the strategy to develop the petrochemical industry till 2030 is being implemented in Belarus. In this context, he asked the government what they were going to do with troubled enterprises of Belneftekhim Concern.