25-06-2012 11:58 Belarus
Belarus: Geely car production harmonious with Russia
MINSK, – PRIME-TASS. The project to assemble China’s Geely cars from knockdown kits in Belarus does not contradict earlier agreements with Russia. Belarus’ First Vice Premier Vladimir Semashko made a statement to this effect on Friday, as he delivered a speech in the lower chamber of Belarus’ parliament.
“We are not confronting Russia because “there is a 2009 industrial assembly agreement that sets forth the terms. In line with these terms, the localization should make 50% or more. It has been estimated that if we produce certain complete parts, weld car bodies and paint them, assemble the chassis and producer electric power generators, we will perfectly fit into the 50% requirement,” Semashko said.
“If we do it, we will get the right for CT-1 certificate, which means that the product was made in Belarus,” the vice premier explained.
Belarus has already started implementing the project in cooperation with Geely: the first two cars already assembled at OAO BATE and awaiting certification, Semashko informed. After that a full-blown production of cars with press working, welding and painting will be launched at the Chinese industrial park.
As previously reported, the project to assemble Chinese cars in Belarus will be subject to “serious debates” with Russia, Russian Ambassador to Belarus Alexander Surikov told a press conference in Minsk on June 6.
“If Belarus decides to assemble Chinese cars, the matter will have to be negotiated with Russia, as we do not want to ruin our automotive industry either,” the ambassador said.
“Naturally we cannot prohibit Belarus from assembling foreign cars and entering into agreements. But I would like to emphasize that in this case Russia would have to ask Belarus some questions regarding the matter,” Surikov said.
“We know about the tax burden in China, where the state has no welfare obligations. Therefore, the tax burden is minimal, and so are wage levels, which makes China the world’s major exporter,” the ambassador said.
Belarus’s Borisov-based enterprise Avtogydrousilitel plans to host a project by Chinese Geely Corp to assemble Chinese passenger cars from knockdown kits.