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Surikov Sees Risks for Belarus

Belarus risks losing the Russian market if it continues to keep investors from entering the country, said Alexander Surikov, Russia's ambassador to Belarus.

"It's not important who buys Belarussian companies — Russians, Americans — it is necessary to make a decision to privatize. Belarus could otherwise fall far behind and become completely uncompetitive, lose even the Russian market," Surikov said in an interview with Interfax published Thursday.

Surikov said negotiations to sell a controlling stake in Minsk Automobile Plant to Russian truck maker Kamaz have dragged on for a long time, so far without results. He said he "virtually does not see investors in Belarus," which he attributed to their reluctance to work with the government.

(MT)

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