The growth of Belarusian foreign trade with the Baltic countries in the last months of 2021 does not mean that the sanctions do not work. Most likely, the Belarusian partners purchased for the future before the deadlines, when cooperation with Belarus will be banned, independent analyst Siarhei Chaly said on the air of Euroradio. We quote his words unchanged.
Therefore, the positive trend is short-term. It is important that sanctions not only mean losses after the entry into force, but also become a new format for dialogue between the West and Belarus.
There is nothing surprising. This is how the US sanctions are designed: new contracts cannot be concluded after January 1, 2022. Old contracts continue to be active until April 1 of this year. Accordingly, the idea is to gain as much as possible. That’s what Yara did by delaying that moment of leaving, realizing it was going to bend anyway.
Therefore, most likely, these months are a one-time situation. Like a sharp increase in sales of the Minsk subway before the increase in the fare. Let’s look at the trend of the next two quarters and try to assess whether the sanctions are working or not.
Of course, there’re loopholes. But the trick is that these holes will subsequently be detected and gradually closed. To do this, an American mechanism that allows you quickly change sanctions has been invented. In this case, they [the United States – ed.] act as the gold standard, which everyone else begins to focus on.
It’s not just about sanctions. Let’s look at the story with Russia. So many years have passed, but sanctions still remain. This is a completely different foreign policy environment. Russia occupies a certain place from which it is difficult to get out now. The same is with us. Or the issue is resolved quickly in one way or another: “sanctions are lifted because…” There are several options. The West will decide like okay, we forgive you. Or Lukashenka will say that he has changed his mind, releases all political prisoners, is tired and leaves.
If this does not happen, then we are going smoothly along the track of Russia. And this becomes permanent in the West’s view: that we are not the Western world, we are not the civilized world. We are the Russian world, with which communication is like this. The authorities are well aware that this is for a long time, because they will not do anything to stop the sanctions from working.