Modern philosophy of Belarus: Andrey Shvets

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  1. The Moulding of Ukraine
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For many centuries, each summer the. Even if other regions have a poor cherry harvest, the rich berries are always in abundance here. No one knows exactly how these wonderful cherries appeared in Glubokoe. They were possibly brought by monks who had large cherry orchards near their monasteries or were cultivated by a local botanist Boleslav Lapyr, even perhaps by Baron von Munchausen.

Now, the sculpture glows from the touch of the hands of numerous tourists. Each region can boast unique traditions and the Vitebsk Region also had its own culinary peculiarities. When there were neither electric nor gas stoves in houses and an unexpected guest arrived, our ancestors used to place kindling-wood on the hearth and make scrambled eggs or pancakes. Participants of the Grutsa club have improved the ancient technolog y. The y take a dry chopping block, cut it into eight places, drop in some diesel fuel and light it.

Then they put a frying pan with dough. The ecological route offers the visitor 17 unusual installations: Polevik the spirit of fields , Pushchevik the spirit of pushcha , Bolotnik an evil spirit of the bog , the Mermaid, the Adder King and other creatures. The most incredible is the chance to walk along this path at night! Just imagine all the emotions experienced by tourists while walking under a starry sky where owls hoot and myths become reality!

By Lyudmila Minakova. Yevfrosiniya Polotskaya in the early 12th century. You can feel just like the first book printer! The reproduction is now touring major book fairs abroad, and in Belarus, such as at celebrations for the annual Day of Belarusian Written Language and at the 30th International Book Fair in Moscow.

He has created hundreds of publications and dozens of books, including one about Alexander Nevsky and another on Prince Vladimir, Holy Equal-to-theApostles. Lihodedov initiated the installation of monuments to those killed in the War, not far from Vileika, and to Orthodox priest Fiodor Yuzefovich who died during the uprising of Skaryna is my countryman, born in Polotsk, as I was. It was there that I first tried to organise my exhibition, even finding a site, but it fell through. I succeeded in Vileika which is, some say, the birthplace of the first Russian book printer, Ivan Fiodorov.

The Moulding of Ukraine

Unique collection Mr. However, the future museum of all things relating to printing and writing, including a unique collection of writing instruments, is sure to be popular. Its location is symbolic since, in Soviet times, the building housed a printing house; Vileika District newspaper journalists worked there. Lihodedov received some funding to purchase the building, to house his cumbersome stropping machine, his set of lead linotype lines, various typographic tools and colourful campaign posters. The 16th century printing press is placed in the centre of the hall and can hardly be confused with anything else.

Since the th anniversary of the birth of Belarusian and Eastern Slavic printing, it has received much attention. Not long ago, film makers visited Vileika to shoot it. There will be a mill to produce paper, in keeping with the age of the printing press, but funding is needed, either by the state or from a serious patron. Everyone must do their own job. I was assisted by my long-time friend Gennady Katlinsky. The major difficulty was to make a wooden screw and a nut.

Look at old carved houses! Truly, people knew their craft. We transport it by mini-bus. We are. His plan is to allow all visitors to try for themselves, making a sheet of paper and printing not only pages, but creating etchings and engravings, and printing a leaflet or a newspaper. Every visitor can then feel the same thrill as the first book printer. Lihodedov studied the craft of old printing at workshops in Leipzig, Mainz and Basel, as well as from Polish and Czech restorers. He does this several times, fixing the pre-cast and inked metal matrix to paper. The bottles of ink might be mistaken for bottles of beverages, while the paper is truly authentic, being handmade.

His master class in making it created a stir at the Moscow Book Fair. Lihodedov smiles. According to researchers, at least a thousand copies were circulated. Printing a single book requires almost , impressions and he created over twenty books. Skaryna would never have had enough time to do everything personally. Meanwhile, some impressions are uneven, made with greater or lesser force, indicating that various people were involved. No page is identical in these old books: some are bright and some are dull.

Initially, he made matrices, producing a separate board with letters for each page and making paper from linen. He was assisted by his son, Dmitry, who looks rather like Skaryna. Of course, when printed in the 16th century, the book looked new. We want to see it through the eyes of the first book printer. One of the Bibles is now kept at the National Library of Belarus. By Dmitry Umpirovich. We follow in the footsteps of our first printer, visiting the cities which played a crucial role in his life: Krakow, Padua, Prague and Vilnius.

Hall in Collegium Maius where medieval students took exams and were awarded academic degrees. The establishment is now named after him: Jagiellonian. In the times of Francysk Skaryna, the University was the major higher school, not only for Poland but for the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. With this in mind, Skaryna studied there. In the 16th century, the fee for the entire training course was eight Groshes: enough to buy two horses, as my guide, Desislawa Christozowa-Gurgul,. Students lived in the bursa like a hostel near the University.

The Collegium Novum is now situated on the site of one such bursa, built especially for poor students from across the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. We lack much information on where he moved afterwards but know for sure that, on November. I hold in my hands one of the accounting books of the University of Padua. At that time, a person called themselves poor if they lacked enough money to study. Piovan continues, turning the page. Urban Church. Piovan continued. Members of the board unanimously agreed to render Skaryna that title, as a result of tentative and private examination.

The hall in the Palace of the Archbishop of Padua — where Francysk Skaryna sat his exam — remains today, though it looks extremely modern, sadly. As in Krakow, Padua University has a memorial plaque devoted to our first book printer. Moreover, Padua has gone further, placing his portrait among the most famous foreign graduates in the Hall of Forty.

His son, Simeon, later became a physician as well. Of course, there were other, less eminent patients. The Hall of Forty: a stand is situated in front of the wall featuring portraits of graduates from Eastern Europe. Galileo Galilei lectured there. The photo is published with the permission of the University of Padua. The business — for which. It shows the date and place of publication, as well as the name of the publisher. Monument to Adam Mickiewicz near the Church of St. Francysk Skaryna might not have seen the monument but definitely visited the church.

Did Skaryna only reach Prague in ? His Psalter publishing is likely to have been preceded by a rather long period of making acquaintance with the situation and printers, and agreeing rent. From August onwards, for two years, Francysk Skaryna released a new Bible edition almost monthly. Anyone connected with book publishing would agree that his speed was amazing. By August 6th, almost everything was ready: translations and illustrations, and a printing house rented, Cyrillic letters cast and necessary materials paper and ink bought.

We still do not know for sure what religion Skaryna supported: Orthodox, Catholic or Hussite. He called himself. Two other European states famous for their religious tolerance — the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and the Venetian Republic including Padua — are close to Skaryna. Prague's tolerance extended to book printing as well, with books issued not only in Latin fonts but also Jewish. Accordingly, even if Cyrillic looked surprising, it was permissible.

This is how Prague became the birthplace of Belarusian book printing. In the early 16th century, the territory of modern Belarus — where Francysk, his father Luka and his brother Ivan were born — was part of that state. I met Prof. As to how Skaryna met his wife, Prof. Temchin wishes that he knew more, lamenting that no love letters have come to light. The work was done at a very high level. His Prague. Historical angle engravings are magnificent.

Rather, he found people to do so, and evaluated their work. I have no doubt that he was well aware of the process of printing, and was able to fully work the press himself. Without that knowledge, he would have failed to produce a printing press in Vilna, as no one else boasted such knowledge in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. His Prague publications are the pinnacle not only of Cyrillic printing but Central European. However, historians believe Francysk received even greater patronage from Jan, an illegitimate son of King Sigismund.

In , Jan, aged 20, was appointed as Bishop of Vilna. On having such a patron, it became easier to establish a printing house. In those days, Vilna was a very intelligent city, boasting five doctors of medicine. The reformer of European medicine, Paracelsus, came to discuss his ideas with them. He also admitted that he faced a crushing defeat as a result of those debates and was forced to leave the city in disgrace.

Our first book printer enjoyed an extremely active life in the capital. Despite bringing personal happiness to Skaryna, Vilna quickly deprived him of it. In , his wife, Margarita, died, leaving her husband with two small sons. In , Frantsisk was imprisoned in Polish Poznan for several months because of his inheritance and debts. Roman promised to pay all his debts, while the patronage of Bishop Jan and the favour of King Sigismund I the Old helped. After Vilna, Francysk never. The lonely widower with two sons was forced to earn money: a problem that had never worried him before.

As a result, he left Vilna, and never returned. In , Francysk Skaryna returned to Prague. He was 45 or perhaps 49 , with average life expectancy at years. The situation in the Bohemian Kingdom had changed: Anna Jagiellonka had ascended to the throne or, to be more correct, her husband, Ferdinand I, had become the King of Hungary, Bohemia and Germany.


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The strong and influential monarch of the great empire employed Skaryna. During his second stay in Prague, Skaryna seems to have worked at the royal court as a doctor and a gardener. It might seem that these professions have little in common but, in the 16th century, healing and botany went hand in hand. Interestingly, at the Francysk Skaryna and. He was a man of versatile talent. Rus, and another young servant. We do not know how Francysk Skaryna spent the next ten years. Probably, he left Prague or lived there until his death. Rus works for me. This Doctor of Medicine previously looked after the royal garden.

It may be so. In January , Simeon was issued a royal charter, giving him the right of inheritance. Accordingly, we know that, by that time, his father had died. The first book printer of Belarus, Lithuania and Eastern Europe left his legacy to the world. Aesthetic pleasures for all tastes Apart from famous performances for lovers of operatic and choreographic art, the Bolshoi Theatre of Belarus presents several innovative projects.

For the fourth time, the Bolshoi Theatre is inviting children and their parents to take part in a family festival, entitled New Year Theatrical Toy, embracing the joy and magic of the New Year. Encouraging families to gather, it inspires us to communicate and nurture our creativity in inventing our own toys. The contest organisers are seeking theatrical ideas which capture the essence of a particular performance or the life of an actor or a musician of the Bolshoi Theatre.

Theatre of Belarus were represented. Many participants demonstrated their imagination and created unique silver snowflakes, sonorous bells, New Year balls and crackers. Each one was made with great love. The New Year Theatrical Toy competition has been launched, giving children plenty of time to work with their parents, grandparents and teachers, for submission between December 1st and 22nd.

If sent by post, toys should be packed well, while those from Minsk are welcome to bring their toys personally, at any time, to the service entrance. Importantly, each toy must be accompanied by its name, alongside your own family name and contact phone number. The winners of the best toys will be awarded and every child involved with receive a souvenir: prizes, diplomas and small gifts will be presented by Bolshoi Theatre sponsors. Over two hundred applications have been submitted to the Minsk International Christmas Singing Competition, being held at the Bolshoi Theatre for the fourth time: from December 14th to 20th.

Young artistes from Bela-. Besides sopranos and baritone singers which usually account for the majority of participants there will be bass-baritones and tenors, as opera directors eagerly anticipate. The contest has three rounds: the first two require a concert master and the final is accompanied by an orchestra, with participants performing one of the main parts from a classical or modern opera.

Stars from the Belarusian Bolshoi Theatre will help entrants. Meanwhile, the audience will join the jury in assessing the third round. Many young artistes will also re-. The jury comprises directors of opera houses, impresarios and famous musical figures, headed by the General Director of the Bolshoi Theatre, Vladimir Gridyushko. The Bolshoi Theatre of Belarus wishes good luck to all the young, talented singers taking part. Students from all over the world came to congratulate him, joining his colleagues and friends.

The documentary details Mr. He has gained global recognition for his European level pro-. The maestro holds many awards — including the most prestigious Benois de la Danse, established by the International Dance Association. At present, Mr. Yelizariev is a professor at the Belarusian State Academy of Music and his students are laureates of prestigious international competitions. Speaking with leading international tennis organisations in Minsk, du r i ng t h e Federation Cup finals, hosted by Chizhovka-Arena, he praised the performance of the Belarusian team. The final match of the unofficial world championship saw the American favourites having to battle hard to defeat the host team, eventually winning Despite being seeded several dozen times higher than the Belarusian team, the Ame r i c ans.

Fans are both elated and disappointed, realising how close the team came to making history. US team coach Kathy Rinaldi has praised the Belarusians, who only recently squeezed into the top one hundred world ranking, yet gave the US team a run for its money.


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  • The experienced opponents were forced into a wild dance in the doubles match. Having gained victory, the Americans began celebrating on the court and were vivacious in the press centre. Meanwhile, Alexandra Sasnovich demonstrated her serious side, giving a thorough analysis of the match.

    She lost to the winner of the US Open, Sloane Stephens, , just half an hour before commencing the decisive doubles match, which no doubt left her feeling exhausted. After playing my singles match, I immediately went into the doubles. Massage therapists worked on my legs, and my father tried to give me some rice to eat. The Belarusian team, making its debut in the World Group, lacks experience in such tactics, but clearly has great potential. In February, Belarus will play Germany in Minsk, with the winning team likely play the Czech squad, which has won the Federation Cup for.

    The leader. It will be a challenge for our girls to repeat their great performance but coach Eduard Dubrov is optimistic. We performed well in the finals, only losing All fans at the final saw a decent game. We have a single wish: to play on and gain experience. If our girls perform.

    Although fans were supporting the Belarusian team, it was a great pleasure for the guests to play. Next season, Belarus and the United States may meet again in the Fed Cup final, if they pass through the quarterfinal and semi-final stages. By Kirill Dmitriev. Fashion — affordable to everyone Fashionable designers and small business: Economy Ministry knows how to double exports of clothes. This year, specialists of the Economy Ministry have shown great interest in designer outfits and sewing businesses. They have pledged a programme of long-term cooperation.

    Why was fashion chosen? The sewing trade and economic calculations are from different spheres but they are closely linked. Almost 67 percent of these are directly involved in sewing. Many companies export up to 80 percent of their produce. We expect that we'll be able to give new impetus to the development of this sector of the economy. The Entrepreneurship Department describes how clothing manufacturing is one of 23 types of activities for which optimum trading conditions will be created. After accepting a package of documents on the simplification of bureaucracy, entrepreneurs will only need to inform the local executive authority at the start of their activity.

    Excessive requirements and inspections will be removed. Arushanyants has no doubt that the simplification of business conditions will enable a reduction in the cost of designer clothes and make them more affordable. Alongside these theoretical plans, officials have also actioned concrete measures. For example, master classes will be conducted for BFW participants. Thanks to these networking sessions, organisers of the BFW will be able to bring together manufacturers of materials accessories, as well as large importers.

    This is a chance for new and experienced designers to make a name for themselves on external markets. BFW organisers hope for a fruitful result from interaction with state authorities. Cooperation with the Foreign Ministry has helped abolish visas for all foreigners who arrive for Belarus Fashion Week.

    This rule was in force long before the introduction of the five-day visa-free regime and was a perfect compliment for guests. Collaboration with the Economy Ministry and the Belarusian Fund for Financial Support to Entrepreneurs will also bring benefits: for example, designers will be able to receive business loans at affordable rates. By Polina Konoga. The Minsker has won the first ever international Miss Wheelchair World and will keep this unique title all her life. Apart from Alexandra, the finals — hosted by Warsaw — featured another twenty-three ladies, including Belarusian Angelina Waleskaya a model with cerebral palsy.

    Alexandra answers our questions… Alexandra, what was the most stressful moment in preparing for the contest? On the fifth and sixth days of our preparation for the gala-finale, we began choreographic training. Despite being truly exhausted, we had to train all day.

    A participant from Ukraine, Ulyana. Any contest brings an element of competitiveness. Was everyone friendly? The atmosphere was very calm; even full of love. It bore deeper meaning. With this in mind, we supported each other in all difficult situations. There was a catwalk at the end, with everyone dancing and moving quickly. It looked spectacular! Was it technically difficult? Our choreographers worked hard to ensure each girl had no problem in performing her movements. Moreover, excellent dancers assisted us, taking into account our individual capabilities, and helping us to move effectively.

    Did you make new friends? No obstacles have hampered her becoming a TV host and having a family. Do you have plans for the future? Now, she timidly touches her crown, smiling gently. Alexandra is very good-natured: a feature which conquered the hearts of the jury.

    In the finals, she was placed first among twenty-four contestants from around the globe. Her days are now tightly scheduled. After a grand gala party and the awards ceremony, she takes on a very public role,. Alexandra recalls events of six years ago with some sadness but with restraint: at the age of 17, she fell from the window of the third floor of her family house, while it was under construction. Since then, she has used a wheelchair. World is hosted by Belarus. The Polish organisers are supporting the idea and have offered their help.

    Returning home, she plans to battle stereotypes regarding people with disabilities. By Taisa Azonovich. The American has no arms or legs but moved beautifully while dancing. We received dance training from 7am to 11pm. It was difficult, with some girls crying at being unable to move their hands as they wished to. Sadly, the organisers failed to somehow reward them. Some participants came with their husbands and I witnessed true love — when women cannot move their hands and even have problems in the bathroom, they are cared for by their loved ones.

    The Finnish entry is unable to talk or move, communicating only with the help of her eyes. She came with her mother, her husband and her husband's sister. She met her husband online and he came to her, in Finland, from Holland. Most books in the collection are of liturgical and religious-moral content: Orthodox and Uniate publications and books created by the Old Believers. The collection comprises many works collected through expedition activity, which the museum began after World War II.

    Nearly two dozen books have been purchased from individuals, or have been donated by state agencies. Initially, the brothers attracted a master of book printing, the closest associate of Ivan Fiodorov — Piotr Mstislavets. Four Evangelist prints of this publication date back to the first publication of the publishing house: the Gospel. The museum exhibit has been restored for the jubilee of Belarusian book printing and the whole process has been photographed to be further demonstrated at the show.

    Featuring over a dozen woodcuts,. From the famous publishing house of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, Vilno Trinity Monastery in the second phase of its activity from to , the Canon, aimed at Old Believers, is on show. The edition is decorated with traditional graphic elements, as seen in Moscow editions for Old Believers.

    Some books boast artistic frames. The most impressive belongs to the 17thth century Gospel from St. Various techniques were used for its production, including molding, stamping, engraving, niello and partial gold coating. The exhibition enables visitors to come closer to the fivehundred-year-old history of Belarusian book printing. Magazine for those Magazine for thosewho want to know who want to know more more Six circulations — in Belarus German, French, Spa www. Magazine for you No. Belarus belarus Politics. Belarus 12 Monthly magazine No. Aesthetic pleasures for all tastes Apart from famous performances for lovers of operatic and choreographic art, the Bolshoi Theatre of Belarus presents several innovative projects Game worthy of finals Belarusian tennis players worthily rival US team in Federation Cup finals Fashion — affordable to everyone Real beauty!

    F ollowing a vote by countries taking part in the conference, Belarus has been overwhelmingly chosen to join the Executive Board, receiving votes. The Deputy Head of the Department of the Protection of Historical and Cultural Heritage of the Belarusian Culture Ministry, Natalia Khvir, hopes that our membership will give us the opportunity to influence particular processes.

    The decision can be reasonably viewed as a high assessment of Belarus as a place of peace and humanism in the region, as well as far beyond its borders. Our efforts to open an ICRC representational office mean a great deal, and we value these very much. Establishing a legal base is the first step in enabling our countries to smooth- ly and safely develop business activity. Together we have focused on a whole range of issues for 25 years in Belarus: from addressing environmental challenges and the fall-out from Chernobyl to fighting HIV and TB; from dealing with migration and refugees to combating human trafficking and domestic violence; from supporting economic growth and working with entrepreneurs to empowering marginalized groups such as women, children, and the elderly.

    This partner- UN and Belarus working together ship for development has yielded significant results. We have to do more to ensure the rights of people living with disabilities in the country are protected, respected and fulfilled. Looking to the future, the importance of our global work through the United Nations is more important and more urgent than ever. It is your ownership, your leadership, your gen- erosity, perseverance and passion that made the difference. Why has bitcoin succeeded?

    Do Belarusian crypto currencies have a future? How does one become a volunteer, and what training is given? For example, there were at least 11, volunteers at the 1st European Games in Baku, but we plan to involve around Paul Chuyko European Games 6, In cities, engineers, veterinarians, librarians, concrete workers, excavator drivers, cooks, hairdressers and seamstresses are all in demand, among other professions. N ot long ago, Minsk hosted the 7th Belarusian Space Congress, gathering over scientists from all over the world.

    By Konstantin Bakun New opportunities Riga, the capital of Latvia, today Neighbours open arms anew Belarus hopes to receive support from Latvia in attracting capital from Scandinavian countries, notes the Chairman of the Council of the Republic, Mikhail Myasnikovich, meeting a delegation from the Latvian Saeima Parliament , headed by Deputy Speaker Gundars Daudze B elarus has appropriate legislation and favourable conditions for investors wishing to implement projects. Speaking about ways to attract Scandinavian capital, Gundars Daudze mentioned that cooperation in transit and logistics looks promising, due to traffic flow between Scandinavia and Eastern Europe via Riga.

    There are good prospects for investment collaboration and interaction, with nearly 2, com- panies in Latvia using Belarusian capital. Weihan Cui, Deputy Director of the Institute of Philosophy of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, PhD: Luca Maria Scarantino, General Secretary of the International Federation of Philosophical Societies Philosophy helps form our structure of consciousness and thinking methods but much depends on the particular school of philosophy and its national peculiarities.

    Philosophical questions in focus 1st Belarusian Congress of Philosophy — National Philosophy in Global World — took place in Minsk M insk transformed into a major intellectual platform for several days, gathering five hundred scientist-philosophers from twenty countries, to discuss acute problems.

    However, their contents Daniil Sharoikin wins international competition Stockholm Junior Water Prize have a scientific basis. After Distinctive features the Great Patriotic War, people from all over the Union came to restore our ruined country. The cult of food Chinese habits differ from those in Belarus, with there being no set time for breakfast, although lunch is taken strictly from There are strict governmental limits on how many children a couple may have, although the long-existing policy of the Communist Party to permit no more than one child per family was abolished on January 1st, Lukashenko discussed the opportunity of extending this route to the Middle Eastern region and found complete understanding from the Turkish leadership, as he told Ms.

    The transit of Venezuelan oil to Belarus annual supplies reaching 10m tonnes is interesting to Ukraine and Lithuania, as well as to other Baltic States. Klaipeda port. Semashko explains. He also notes that the supply of a trial batch of oil via Klaipeda was a success this year. Alongside political and economic dimensions, another vital sphere exists for liaisons: interpersonal contacts. During Ms. Once it is ratified in by both countries, those from border towns and.

    The construction of new transit facilities is also possible in Lithuania. Speaking of her attitude towards joint energy projects, Ms. The EU is keen on energy independence. Lukashenko, who notes that Lithuanian businesses are welcomed warmly in Belarus. Lithuanian businessmen place no political conditions on investment, as investors from some other states do. The major areas for mutual business interest are logistics, construc-.

    Those wishing to acquire a multientry visa to the neighbouring country will pay just 20 euros. Around , residents in Belarus and , people in Lithuania will be eligible, removing another barrier to Belarus-EU relationships. Minsk hopes that, in the course of time, the existing visa regime between Belarus and the EU will be simplified. By Vitaly Volyanyuk. On meeting the Belarusian President, Mr. Westerwelle and Mr. Sikorski underlined that the EU wishes to see Belarus as a fully-fledged partner, rather than as a mere neighbour.

    Naturally, Belarus desires the same. On welcoming his guests, Mr. Lukashenko expressed gratitude to Poland and Germany, saying that they had done a great deal during difficult conditions — and continue to do much today, to ensure constructive relations between Belarus and the EU. According to the Belarusian leader, the potential for co-operation is yet to be fully realised, with political and economic sanctions hampering the rapid improvement of relationships. The Head of State believes that it would be wise to eradicate these methods.

    Speaking of the Eastern Partnership programme, Mr. Lukashenko, speaking to the two foreign. We liaise closely with both. During the meeting at the Presidential Residence, Mr. Sikorski noted that Poland supports the economic integration of Belarus with the EU, as well as the simplification of the visa regime. He hopes that political conditions will be created to allow Belarus to take advantage of EU financial assistance. He gave Moldova as an example, which receives 2bn euros from the EU. He explained that co-operation should be built on principles of democracy and supremacy of law, with transparency at the forthcoming elections of primary importance for Europe.

    In turn, the Belarusian. Sikorski and Vladimir Makei, the Head of the Presidential Administration, tackled the strengthening of bilateral political and economic interaction, as well as the removing of barriers hampering our dialogue. Sikorski and Mr. Westerwelle negotiated with their Belarusian colleague, Sergei Martynov. He notes that Minsk, Warsaw and Berlin are keen to improve relations and promote further progress in a united Europe, while strengthening independence, as well as economic and energy security.

    The visit by the two foreign ministers was accompanied by practical decisions. At the final briefing, Mr. Unexpected growth of production in all branches of the real economy — especially, industrial production which rose by 9. The forecast mentions figures of 11 to 13 percent. In , Belarusian GDP growth stood at 10 percent but this impressive development was interrupted by the global economic crisis. As a result, GDP rose only 0. How can this pace of growth — natural for Asian states — be explained? The major reason for the good economic growth of recent years 8.

    The consequences of the crisis have been felt in the form of reduced tax revenue, leading to a growing budget deficit. In the first seven months of , the budget deficit stood at 2. The Government promises better results in but experts note the need for a changed model, recommending the country to avoid full dependence on its trading partners.

    The problem of attracting foreign investments will remain an issue until true stimuli exist to inspire capital injections. This post-Soviet republic has always had to fight against growing prices. Since December , production prices have been growing quicker than consumer prices.

    The level of inflation could reach 7. The level of education in Belarus has been continuously increasing. According to the census, 90 percent of Belarusians had higher, secondary and basic education degrees against 77 percent registered in , and 85 percent in The level of education of rural residents increased significantly. The share of people with higher, secondary and basic education degrees was 68 percent among rural residents in but, according to the census, this share increased to 82 percent.

    This index remained unchanged for urban residents — 93 percent. In Russia, this index was equal to 4. It was the first time that official Berlin had been represented at such a high level. On the Belarusian side, the welcoming speech was given by the Head of the Presidential Administration, Vladimir Makei. In fact, a record number of participants were registered over the three working days, with over people from 22 countries discussing the situation in Belarus and prospects for development, at plenary sessions and thematic working groups. The extended discussion demonstrated that Belarus and the European Union hope to leave behind the lost years of inefficient isolation and to move closer to each other.

    Not long ago, the European Commission. At the same time, Russia concluded the Customs Union with Belarus and Kazakhstan, aiming to attract these two states into establishing a single economic space. However, many further steps are needed to reach good relations. Modernisation and democratisation will continue, as is inevitable for such an open state as Belarus. However, changes must occur from within rather than being imposed from outside. Pofalla, in turn, assured those present that the EU is ready for full scale co-operation with Belarus.

    He believes that additional conditions are required but that the attitude towards Belarus has changed in recent times. The economic aspects of our co-operation were studied in detail during plenary sittings and within working groups. Lindner noted that not all parties agree that the crisis is over but that certain objective facts regarding our economic liaisons prove that Belarus and Germany are now trading more actively.

    In comparison to last year, investments have also. Over the last five years, BelarusGermany turnover has risen by over 60 percent. German interest in the Forum was evident, since major German institutes, public associations and business structures — such as Commerzbank — were in attendance. Of course, no concrete agreements between businessmen were expected, as the event was designed only as a forum for debate and information sharing. Contracts are likely to be signed in Frankfurt am Main, which is to host the Belarusian Investment Forum. It is the financial capital of Germany and, perhaps, Europe.

    This will be the logical continuation of dialogue begun at the 13th Minsk Forum. Sadokho also noted some positive trends. Not long ago, the Agriculture and Food Ministry agreed to help Belarusian enterprises certify their products, aiding export to the European market. Belarus is keen to see regional projects established within this initiative, focusing on construction of underground gas storage facilities, oil transportation, the preliminary exchange of electronic customs data and the development of road infrastructure.

    Of course, visas cannot be abolished overnight but, as the top ranking politician notes, he is ready to initiate the necessary steps. In early , Belarus and the EU are to begin negotiating a simplified visa regime, reduction of visa costs and readmission, explains the Latvian Ambassador to Belarus, Mikhail Popkovs. No doubt, many problems still require solutions but the general mood of Minsk Forum shows that real change in European-Belarusian relations is close at hand.

    By Igor Slavinski. How does the Belarusian Investment Forum in Frankfur t am Main differ from the similar event which took place two years ago in the financial capital of London? Has there been any progression? Attracting direct foreign investments is a priority for most global exportoriented states. Only a few countries, being rich in minerals, can ensure sustainable development exclusively from domestic resources.

    Abromavičius Aivaras

    In fact, it was a logical move, with the programme aiming to show the liberalisation of the economy, the simplification of business procedures and the privatisation of state-owned sites. Our major task is to attract the attention of potential investors, not only from Germany but from other states, showing them that Belarus offers unique opportunities. We rely on creating attractive conditions for setting up manufacturing and doing business, stressing that we offer a gateway to sales within the new Customs Union.

    In addition, we have an advantageous geographical position and a highly qualified workforce. Belarusians are known for being hard-working, disciplined and organised, while being able to work within a social market economy. They are decent and orderly. Liberalisation, the simplification of the taxation system, privatisation and legal guarantees for investors are improving the investment climate in Belarus.

    These have laid the foundation of succession at the forums in Frankfurt am Main and London. The Investment Forum in Minsk must be mentioned too. That in Frankfurt am Main is the third in a row but the first such major event in Germany. In London, in , the event was organised during the global financial crisis. Meanwhile, that in Germany is taking place under different circumstances; we are now overcoming the consequences of the. Deutsche Bank, headquartered in Frankfurt am Main, helped with their issue.

    These and other factors — such as GDP growth in Germany reaching a record of 3. Presenting our opportunities is simply the icing on the cake. What is the aim of the Belarusian Investment Forum in Frankfurt, in the present political and economic context? This year alone, Belarusian and German foreign ministers met twice officially. Investments Economic Co-operation. Germany was visited by business circles from Minsk and Vitebsk Region, while German entrepreneurs paid a return visit to Belarus.

    Over companies with German capital are successfully operating in our country, while almost a hundred German firms are represented, alongside the GermanBelarusian Economic Club and the German Economic Office in Belarus. However, we have no desire to stop there. To what extent is Germany helping the technical reequipment of Belarusian enterprises?

    This explains the traditional negative balance of bilateral trade, but imports from Germany are justified, since they enhance our export potential. Our German partners have helped us modernise and master the production of new manufactures: at the Belarusian Steel Works, Integral, Minsk Tractor Works and Grodnokhimvolokno. Alternative energy is among the most promising directions for our interaction, since German firms are. The Forum's major task is to present Belarus during Euro Finance Week, as a unique place for foreign investments. With this in mind, the active partcipation of potential investors from Germany and other UN and global states would be the most significant result for us participants from all over the globe.

    As a result, the presentation of our economic possibilities is aimed not only at German businessmen and financiers. It aims to attract the attention of all participants of Euro Finance Week. Our practical tasks are evident: we want potential investors to learn more about our country, asking questions of t he he a ds of t he B el ar us i an Government and communicating with Belarusian businessmen.

    They can establish useful contacts, while outlining promising areas for cooperation and liaisons with Belarus. We also aim to sign concrete agreements and contracts in coming years. Germany is viewed by Belarusians as a key partner for economic modernisation. Is it justifying its title as an. With the help of German firms, B elarus has been constructing its first wind park and bio-gas facilities.

    Our country has been building enterprises to process hous ehold indust r ia l waste and to produce modern construction materials, using advanced technologies developed in Germany. In fact, German technologies are present in every production sector of our economy, being reliable, delivered on t ime and coming wit h hig h quality technical service maintenance contracts.

    This is highly appreciated by Belarusian customers. Which proposals have Belarusians taken to Frankfurt am Main? The Belarusian Investment Forum is organised according to thematic sections, with plenary sittings. The former allow Belarusian participants to present their proposals on investment co-operation. In turn, infrastructure development within the Customs Union of Belarus, Russia and Kazakhstan in the field of transport, logistics, construction and tourism is being discussed during the second section, supervised by the Transport Ministry, the Construction and Architecture Ministry, the Tourism and Sports Ministry and regional executive committees.

    Other sections are devoted to promising investment areas involving industry and agriculture, energy efficiency and ecology, and renewable energy sources. We believe this format will allow participants to discuss proposals from Belarus in a business-like manner, with potential investors able to share their expertise on how these ventures might be realised. Experience of organising similar events in Germany proves that contacts behind the scenes are no less important, with liaisons made during breaks, receptions and business lunches. We are hopeful of success, since the largest public organisations are our partners; flagships of German industry.

    The Committee on Eastern European Economic Relations is our major partner — an influential organisation boasting wonderful contacts among the political and economic elite of Germany, with experience of working in our region. Investments has been organising Euro Finance Week for the past twenty years, gaining a perfect reputation. All these factors should create a bright framework for the successful org an is at i on of t he B el ar u s i an Investment Forum.

    Who is taking part on the German side? Are they well known, reliable partners or are we seeing new faces? Which areas of co-operation are of most interest to them? The Forum in Frankfurt am Main is planned as an international scale event. Quite often, the positive responses of famous companies and corporations encourage new-comers in deciding how best to invest in a certain country. Apart from potential investors, we expect to see the heads of the Eastern Committee of the German Economy, the German Exchange, the German Union of Chambers of Industry and Commerce, famous banks, consulting and rating agencies and international economic organisations.

    German companies are most interested in the promotion of their products to the East, while we are eager to set up new facilities, attracting German technologies and money. This union enables us to hope that strategic interests will coincide. German busi-. How is this new Union influencing the business plans of our German partners? The Belarusian Investment Forum will answer this question.

    No doubt, the formation of the Customs Union has aroused true interest among German businessmen. Our Embassy has received dozens of inquiries regarding terms of delivery for ready-made products, parts and components, as well as terms governing the production and distribution of manufactures produced within the territory of a Customs Union member. German businessmen are extremely interested in problems relating to the mutual recognition of certificates and permissions and the customs documents needed to import goods into the Customs Union.

    The development of modern logistical infrastructure is vital, so our German partners are delighted to hear about the construction of several dozen large logistical centres in Belarus. Giants such as German Railways and Lufthansa Airline are keen to help realise these projects. No doubt, the simplification and speediness of customs clearance of cargo should enhance interest from Western businessmen, inspiring greater co-operation with our country. E-declaration and unification with European documents, as well as. The idea of establishing a single customs space is also believed to be progressive.

    German businessmen are used to a lack of borders and customs barriers, in trading with their EU. Any action which simplifies such procedures and accelerates cargo movement is heartily welcome. Investments Another important step is finding sources of renewable energy.

    Being a European leader in sun, wind, biomass and gas power, Germany is ready to share its experience and modern technologies. Belarus is now building its own wind park and bio-gas facilities, while relying on the wider use of local fuels. Our strategic goals are obvious: we wish to avoid reliance on a single provider, while reducing consumption of oil and pursuing sources of renewable energy.

    With this in mind, one of the sections of the Belarusian Investment Forum is dedicated to innovations in this field. We expect to see a keen exchange of opinions regarding major trends in alternative energy development. Possibilities for experience exchange and implementation of new developments in this field will be receiving our attention. A law on alternative energy in Belarus, inspired by decades of German experience, is in the final stage of its adoption. Apart from this, in my view, Belarusian participants of the Forum will be interested in the financial issue.

    What results are you expecting from the Forum in Frankfurt am Main? With this in mind, the active participation of potential investors from Germany and other EU Belta. Which aspects of this field are under focus at the Forum? S i n c e m o s t Eu rop e a n s t at e s depend on a relatively small number of suppliers of energy resources, the problem of energy security is ever more topical, as seen at the G8 and G20 summits, and at numerous conferences and symposiums.

    Its second sitting took place. The major focus of energy-related dialogue is the enhancement of energy efficiency. The Germans justly view efficient energy consumption as the most promising path to energy security. In this respect, Belarus is keen to study and implement German experience regarding energy saving technologies, the production of new generation white goods consuming less electricity and the use of modern construction materials with improved heat insulation. We hope to enhance interest in our country among businessmen who have previously disregarded Belarus as a promising partner for various reasons, including following established stereotypes.

    Naturally, we well understand the psychology of European investors, who tend to conduct thorough analysis of the situation before making a decision. They ask for the opinions of independent auditors and famous consulting companies, while visiting potential sites. Only then do negotiations take place.

    The Forum primarily aims to encourage them towards this step. It aims to help solve all issues facing those setting up new businesses. New possibilities are opening up to investors wishing to work in Belarus and within the Customs Union and we want to make these known. It would be wrong to expect the signing of large investment contracts with new partners during the Forum. Thank you for the interview! By Nina Romanova.

    The customs service celebrated its 19th anniversary. Alexander Shpilevsky, head of the state customs committee shared with us new plans and prospects On creating business conditions. Trade turnover is growing and, unsurprisingly, increased demand is placed on the customs service. What do businesses need at present?

    Primarily, they need prompt and efficient customs procedures. They need to know exact times for delivery, while reducing paperwork on describing goods and need unified terms of delivery meeting international norms. Accordingly, we must utilise the latest infor-. We need constructive and open dialogue. They all are able to access top-priority customs clearance and boast some other advantages, enabling them to significantly cut costs relating to the transportation and storage of goods.

    The strategy of customs development is largely guided by analysis and risk management. The efficiency of certain customs operations has risen 8-fold, while the number of customs examinations has fallen 5-fold.


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    • Shpilevsky stresses that innovations are helping the Customs Union integrate the work of exporters, carriers and importers. Accordingly, the largest border checkpoints, supervising major cargo traffic, have been reconstructed: Kamenny Log and Kotlovka on the Belarusian-Lithuanian border ; and Kozlovichi, Varshavsky Most, Bruzgi.

      Construction and Berestovitsa on the Belarusian-Polish border. In October, the Benyakoni road checkpoint is to reopen after reconstruction, on the border with Lithuania. The technical means of control are also being revamped. Under the EU TACIS trans-border co-operation programme, the customs service has received five modern mobile x-ray scanners, for inspecting large trucks. There are plans to acquire modern scanners for all border checkpoints.

      The Customs Committee is continuing itsworktointroduceane-declarationsystem, with results already in evidence: companies have reduced losses while customs clearance time has fallen over 8-fold — standing at just minutes. Shpilevsky, technological improvements should allow customs clearance of goods to be re-located to their place of manufacture and consumption and to the 13 new logistics centres which are being built.

      Modern methods are being used to counteract crime, based on risk management and post-audit measures. Additionally, technical equipment is in use and we now have a dog service. Since foreign economic activity has increased, the state budget is receiving more customs fees: over Br7. By Igor Stroev. Work is now in full swing on the 32 floored building, with 14 storeys already rising above the city. The first four are to host administrative premises, including offices, shops and beauty salons, while the underground floor is to boast parking for every resident.

      The top two floors will be penthouses. The m skyscraper is notable for its design and modern, technological solutions, h av i n g c l i m at e control air conditioning and ventilated facades. The building is to be insulated against street noise. Alarm and security systems are being installed, with video observation and guards.

      By , another elite building will be operational nearby, in addition to a hotel, parking and a trading centre. By , the Centre will be complete, boasting modern houses, hotels and offices. By Oksana Shikut. Pros and cons of virtual market Large stores are set to launch online shopping although some customers are sure to continue preferring personally visits to the shops. The number of Internet shopping sites grows annually, inspiring the need for a site uniting many shops.

      This would save time and allow us to browse more effectively. Until recently, it was fashionable to order furniture or clothes from catalogues. Now, the Internet has encouraged us to turn to websites instead. B elarusians are beginning to learn the benefits of shopping online, although our number is much lower than in Western Europe or the USA.

      Nevertheless, the launch of online versions of existing large shops can inspire us to give such shopping a try. The advantage is that usual trade rules are followed, with cheques submitted and guarantees provided. Unlike some other shops, large department. White goods are most popular of all. Trying this for ourselves, we discovered that many products in Brest. At present, a glitch in Internet shopping seems to be the problem of delivery for heavy goods across Belarus. The expense of such delivery is prohibitive; even city residents seldom use this online service. Door-to-door delivery to Minsk is not even available, being far too expensive.

      However, large private online shops are ready to deliver heavy goods — such as refrigerators and TV sets — from Minsk to any city throughout Belarus. This customer service is driving sales. Moreover, once a certain number of sales have been registered to a particular city, delivery costs fall.

      A refrigerator can usually be delivered to a city located over km from the capital for just Br57, Additionally, payments can be made by cash, card, e-money transfer or credit. Will they soon catch up with the service offered by private companies? Specialists have calculated that Internet trade will continue to grow, since 30 percent of the population are already regular Internet users over 3m people.

      Over 2, online shops are registered in Belarus most private but large, state-run shops are gradually joining the market, realising the future potential for sales.

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      List of participants

      By Yelena Pokrovskaya. Kovalev, this trend is likely to continue, with expenditure on food products falling as incomes rise. The Professor notes that Belarusian residents are eating as well as those from EU states these days, while spending less on their utility bills. To ensure a stable future, we must learn how to save money, since Belarusians save slightly less than their counterparts in some other countries.

      Reading, playing mobile phone games and looking through the windows will be supplemented with an interesting new activity. By late , some routes will have access to the Internet. The idea was recently discussed at the Business Internet conference. This will be implemented by one of the largest Belarusian autocentres, jointly with a mobile communication operator. High-speed 3G Internet will be available.

      Vilnius has recently introduced 15 trolley buses equipped with wireless connection free of charge. The innovation aims to enhance the popularity of public transport. Traumatologist Seyed Usef Goltabrisi has been working for five years in surgery of the regional outpatient department. What attracts them and do they compete with domestic specialists? Some patients complain of back pain while others have broken a leg or their hand. When asked the name of her doctor, the girl stumbles.

      He spent his childhood there, joining the army after school and taking part in the Iran-Iraq war. After it ended, he decided to leave his country to continue studying. I moved to Minsk and, after completing language courses, entered the Remedial Department of the Medical Institute now known as the Belarusian State. Medical University. However, it was my goal, which I pursued. As a student, I learnt the language for a long time. He received his higher education there but moved to Minsk four years ago to train, graduating from the Belarusian State Agrarian Technical University.

      He then began a career as a sales manager and currently works as the deputy director of a shop. She was born in Vilnius but, later, moved to border-neighbouring Postavy, with her parents and older brother. Deliberate decision Belarus is the best CIS state to be a mother, according to Save the Children — an independent international organisation. Meanwhile, Russia is ranked 38th, followed by Ukraine 39th and Moldova 40th. Contemporary Belarusian girls are less likely to feel they must marry, with the age of first marriage rising as a result.

      The National Statistical Committee of Belarus notes that, in , this figure stood at By , this had risen to The trend is evident across Europe, w it h t he ave r age age of first brides exceeding In most states, this figure has reached years. As we might expect, the average age at w hich women are giving birth to their first children has also risen. Ten years ago, the average age for first births was Recently, Belarusian women have embraced the idea of raising families, with 1, more babies born last year than in In , this stood at just one case per ,, approaching that of developed countries.

      By Yekaterina Razumova. Life there is more expensive. She was born and grew up in Daugavpils before graduating from her local Pedagogical University as a teacher of mathematics. Her old hobby is now her profession, bringing both pleasure and an income. Every foreigner has their own fate and path to Belarus.

      The trend seems to be that a growing number of people from abroad are arriving. About , foreigners and those without citizenship currently reside in Belarus, with over 25, having permanent residency. Where are they employed? This is why many foreigners work as shepherds, stock breeders and crop growers. Computers are often criticised for being too logical and artistically inflexible, but this new neuro-computer models a different system, operating like a human brain, thinking laterally. This avoids the usual shortcomings. The head of the project, Mikhail Tatur, tells us about the development in detail:.

      What is a neuro-computer exactly? We have scientific schools and organisations dealing with neuron networks countr ywide. Artificial neuron networks resemble the human nervous system, using programmes, as is usual with computers. What is the advantage of these neuro-networks? You might have a serious intellectual task which needs solving quickly. A criminal database comprises several million files, so finding a fingerprint or photo match can take time with a. Meanwhile, a neuro-computer can process the data in parallel, rather than successively, doing this in real time.

      A supercomputer can do this too… Ye s. Our innovation is a portable co-processor which can be attached to a usual computer via a standard interface, for solving sp e cif ic intel le c tua l t asks. This neuro-processor emulates the work of or more artificial neurons nervous cells. Where w ill this computer be applied?

      Additionally, it could help doctors in their diagnosis. Recently, we attended a conference in Spanish Salamanca, reporting on our results. Which paths might computer technologies follow in the future? Most likely, bio-computers will be common. Can you imagine: living tissue will be used in each processor instead of artificial neurons! People could have chips inserted into their own bodies. Realistically, there are various new applications about to be launched: graph processors; intellectual systems of video processing; and neuro-computers. By Vladimir Strelkov. New possibilities are opening up in the fields of industry, microbiology, chemistry and medicine.

      Doctors will be able to use the technology to diagnose and treat various diseases, while conducting operations on the smallest cells of the body. The Belarusian laser pincer should be ready soon, going for laboratory tests conducted jointly with colleagues from Saudi Arabia. The latter are to assist in assembly. Practical application should then begin. The laser pincer could become a major instrument allowing Belarusian scientists to make new discoveries in the field of bio- and nano-technologies.

      By Olga Belyavskaya. However, the scope of domestic retail remains modest in comparison to Europe, where retail networks a c c ou nt for 6 0 - 9 0 percent of turnover. In some states, such investment has led. This infringes upon the interests of citizens employed in retail. However, some believe that the further liberalisation of trade would inspire domestic retail development. A growing number of market players are already competing in this segment, with prices, convenience of location, parking availability and range of products inspiring competitive advantages.

      Possessing all of the above mentioned advantages, the company is increasing its efficiency by establishing its own logistics centre; this will reduce costs, allowing prices to be reduced. Moreover, the company will be better able to control its range and quality. Since Belarus already boasts an efficient labour-force of specialists, the system clearly works well and is retained throughout most transitional countries, including CIS states.

      What are the disadvantages? We could see talented young people leaving the country due to the increased mobility an additional European-style diploma will bring. Many students already take part in exchanges, studying at foreign universities; about 1, at present. However, student mobility for its own sake lacks sense; it needs to fulfil a real goal. We already plan to send hundreds or, even, thousands of young people to Russia and other countries for training — as we need specialists in nuclear energy.

      Kazakhstan is currently training 5, students abroad but we. We may also see our first level education reduce in quality, due to reduced terms of study, while becoming more expensive, due to the transition to international accreditation. B eing an experienced Rector, what traditions in the field of higher education do you wish to preserve? The leading universities of the Soviet Union were strong and competitive on the international arena, boasting powerful scientific schools headed by leading scientists — working both in theory and practice.

      Doroshenko then invaded Left-Bank Ukraine and, after Ivan Briukhovetsky 's demise in , was proclaimed hetman of all Ukraine. During his absence from the Right Bank, however, the Zaporozhian Cossacks proclaimed Petro Sukhovii hetman; soon after, the Poles returned and established Mykhailo Khanenko as yet another rival hetman.

      Returning to confront his adversaries, Doroshenko appointed Demian Mnohohrishny acting hetman —72 on the Left Bank. A Muscovite army invaded the Left Bank, however, and Mnohohrishny was forced to swear allegiance to the tsar see Hlukhiv Articles in Ukraine was divided again. Weakened, Petro Doroshenko was forced to rely increasingly on the Ottomans. In his forces joined the huge Turkish- Tatar army that wrested Podilia away from the Poles see Buchach Peace Treaty of , and in —7 he found himself fighting on the side of the Turks against the Orthodox forces of the tsar and of the new hetman of Left-Bank Ukraine , Ivan Samoilovych.

      Compromised by his association with the Muslim occupation and the ravages of the civil war, the now unpopular Doroshenko surrendered to Samoilovych in The Peace Treaty of Bakhchesarai left much of southern Right-Bank Ukraine a deserted neutral zone between the two empires. No longer in need of Khmelnytsky, the Ottomans had him executed, and pashas governed the Right Bank from Kamianets-Podilskyi. Although Demian Mnohohrishny , like Ivan Briukhovetsky , was elected hetman there with Muscovite acquiescence, he did not intend to be a puppet of the tsar.

      This was evident from his demands that Moscow limit its military presence in the cities to Kyiv , Nizhyn , Pereiaslav , and Chernihiv. With the help of mercenary regiments , he managed to establish order on the Left Bank, but his constant conflicts with the increasingly entrenched Cossack starshyna brought about his downfall. Demian Mnohohrishny 's successor Ivan Samoilovych —87 made loyalty to Moscow and cordial relations with the starshyna the cornerstones of his policy. He thus managed to remain hetman for an unprecedented 15 years. To win over the starshyna , he awarded the members generous land grants and created the so-called fellows of the standard a corps of junior officers , thereby encouraging the development of a hereditary elite in Left-Bank Ukraine.

      Like all hetmans, Samoilovych attempted to extend his authority over all of Ukraine. He tightened his control over the unruly Zaporozhian Cossacks , and from he fought alongside the Muscovites against Petro Doroshenko and the Turks. Greatly disappointed by his and Muscovy's failure to conquer the devastated Right-Bank Ukraine, he organized the mass evacuation of its inhabitants to the Left-Bank Ukraine and Slobidska Ukraine. The Polish-Muscovite Eternal Peace of and anti-Muslim coalition validated Poland 's claims to Right-Bank Ukraine and placed the Zaporizhia lands under the direct authority of the tsar instead of the hetman.

      Consequently, Samoilovych was not overly co-operative when Muscovy launched a huge invasion of the Crimea in Blamed by the Muscovite commander Vasilii Golitsyn and the Cossack starshyna for the failure of the campaign, Samoilovych was deposed and exiled to Siberia. After Poland recovered Right-Bank Ukraine from Turkey in and the Zaporozhian Cossacks asserted their autonomy , only about a third of the territory of the Hetman state , or Hetmanate, that Bohdan Khmelnytsky established remained under the authority of the hetmans. Situated now mostly in Left-Bank Ukraine , the Hetmanate consisted of only 10 regiments.

      While the structure of Cossack self-government underwent only minor changes, major shifts occurred in the socioeconomic structure of the Left Bank. By the late 17th century, the starshyna had virtually excluded rank-and-file Cossacks from decision-making and higher offices, and the latter's political decline was closely related to their mounting economic problems.

      Individual Cossacks took part in the almost endless wars of the 17th and early 18th centuries at their own expense. Consequently many of them were financially ruined, and this caused a decline in the number of battle-ready Cossacks and in the size of the Cossack army. In the Hetmanate's army numbered only about 20, men. Moreover, the equipment, military principles, and tactics on which the Cossacks relied had become increasingly outdated. Confronted by internal weaknesses, leading a depleted military force, and disillusioned by the behavior of the Poles and Ottomans during the Ruin , most Cossack leaders no longer questioned the need to maintain links with Moscow.

      But they were still committed to preserving what was left of the rights guaranteed to them by the Pereiaslav Treaty of The Mazepa era. For most of his years in office Mazepa pursued the traditional, pro-Muscovite policies of the Left-Bank Ukraine hetmans. He continued to strengthen the Cossack starshyna , issuing them over 1, land grants see Kolomak Articles , but he also placed certain limits on their exploitation of the lower classes.

      The largess of the tsars made him one of the wealthiest landowners in Europe. Mazepa used much of his wealth to build, expand, and support many churches and religious, educational, and cultural institutions. His pro- starshyna policies, however, engendered discontent among the masses and the anti-elitist Zaporozhian Cossacks and resulted in a dangerous but unsuccessful Tatar -supported Zaporozhian uprising led by Petro Petryk in —6. A cardinal principle of Ivan Mazepa 's policy was the maintenance of good relations with Moscow. He developed close relations with Tsar Peter I , energetically helping him in his —6 Azov campaigns against the Tatars and Turks.

      He was also his adviser in Polish affairs. These close contacts helped him gain Muscovite backing for the occupation of Right-Bank Ukraine in during the great anti-Polish Cossack revolt led by Semen Palii. Once again Ukraine was united under the rule of one hetman. The Cossack regiments suffered huge losses during difficult campaigns in the Baltic Sea region, Poland , and Saxony; the civilian populace had to support Muscovite troops and work on fortifications; and Peter's reforms threatened to eliminate Ukrainian autonomy and integrate the Cossacks into the Muscovite army.

      Pressured by the disgruntled starshyna , Mazepa began having doubts about Moscow's overlordship.

      Business as Usual in Belarus: The Alternance Dance

      In October , after the tsar informed Mazepa that he could not count on Moscow's aid should the Swedes and Poles invade Ukraine, Mazepa decided to join the advancing Swedes. In July , Charles and Mazepa were defeated in the decisive Battle of Poltava and fled to Ottoman Moldavia , where the aged and dejected hetman died. About 50 leading members of the starshyna , almost Cossacks from the Hetman state , and over 4, Zaporozhian Cossacks followed Ivan Mazepa to Bendery.

      In the spring of they elected Pylyp Orlyk , Mazepa's general chancellor , as their hetman-in-exile. Anxious to attract potential support, Orlyk drafted the Constitution of Bendery. After initial successes, the campaign failed. Left-Bank Ukraine. After the failure of Ivan Mazepa 's plans, the absorption of the Hetman state into the Russian Empire began in earnest.

      It was, however, a long, drawn-out process, which varied in tempo, because some Russian rulers were more dedicated centralizers than others, and during certain times it was dangerous to antagonize the Ukrainians particularly in the course of war with the Ottomans. To weaken Ukrainian resistance, the imperial government used a variety of divide-and-conquer techniques: it encouraged conflicts between the hetmans and the Cossack starshyna , cowed the latter into submission by threatening to support the peasantry, and used complaints by commoners against the Ukrainian government as an excuse to introduce Russian administrative measures.

      With the acquiescence of the tsar, Ivan Skoropadsky was chosen hetman — Several Russian innovations followed his election. In violation of tradition, no new treaty was negotiated, and the tsar confirmed Ukrainian rights only in general terms see Reshetylivka Articles of Peter I appointed a Russian resident, accompanied by two Russian regiments, to the hetman's court with supervisory rights over the hetman and his government.

      The hetman's residence was moved from Baturyn to Hlukhiv , closer to the Russian border. Peter began the practice of personally appointing colonels , bypassing the hetman, while the resident received the right to confirm other officers. Many of the new colonels were Russians or other foreigners, and for the first time Russians, particularly Aleksandr Menshikov , acquired large landholdings in Ukraine many of them expropriated from the Mazepists.

      Even publishing was controlled by Peter's decree of , which forbade publication of all books in Ukraine with the exception of liturgical texts, which, however, were to be published only in the Russian redaction of Church Slavonic. In Ukrainians were forbidden to export their grain and other products directly westward. Instead, they had to ship through Russian-controlled Riga and Arkhangelsk, where the prices were dictated by the Russian government. Russian merchants, meanwhile, received preferential treatment in exporting their goods to the Hetmanate.

      Tens of thousands of Cossacks were sent north to build the Ladoga canal and the new capital of Saint Petersburg , where many of them died from overwork, malnutrition, and unsanitary conditions. Established supposedly to look after the tsar's interest by controlling finances and to hear appeals against any wrongdoings of the Cossack starshyna , it seriously undermined the position of the hetman. Ivan Skoropadsky protested vehemently but to no avail. Soon after its establishment he died. While Pavlo Polubotok was acting hetman —4 , a struggle for power developed between him and Gen Stepan Veliaminov, the head of the Little Russian Collegium.

      Refusing to give ground to the Collegium, Polubotok improved several aspects of the hetman government, especially the judiciary, so as to deprive Russians of an excuse for interference. To reduce peasant grievances, he pressured the starshyna to be less blatant in exploiting the peasantry. Polubotok's and the starshyna 's repeated entreaties to restore their privileges, abolish the Collegium, and appoint a hetman see Kolomak Petitions angered Peter I and he responded by increasing the authority of the Collegium. Soon afterward, Polubotok and his colleagues were ordered to Saint Petersburg and imprisoned there.

      Polubotok died in prison. His colleagues were pardoned after Peter's death in In it introduced direct taxation of the Ukrainians. But, when Stepan Veliaminov demanded that Russians in Ukraine , and especially the influential Aleksandr Menshikov , also pay taxes, he lost support in Saint Petersburg. Moreover, the possibility of a new war with the Ottoman Empire raised the need to appease the Ukrainians.

      Therefore, in , Emperor Peter II , influenced by Menshikov, abolished the Collegium and sanctioned the election of a new hetman, Danylo Apostol — The new hetman's diplomatic, military, and political prerogatives were limited. Aware that any attempt to restore the hetman's political rights was doomed, Danylo Apostol concentrated on improving social and economic conditions. He regained, however, the right to appoint the General Officer Staff and colonels , greatly reduced the number of Russians and other foreigners in his administration, brought Kyiv , long under the authority of Russian governors , under his sway, and had the number of Russian regiments in Ukraine limited to six.

      Thus, he slowed the process of the Hetmanate's absorption into the Russian Empire. After Danylo Apostol's death, the new empress, Anna Ivanovna —40 , forbade the election of a new hetman and established a new board, the Governing Council of the Hetman Office —50 , to rule the Ukrainians. Its first president, Prince Aleksei Shakhovskoi, received secret instructions to spread rumors blaming the hetmans for taxes and mismanagement and to persuade Ukrainians that the abolition of the Hetman state would be in their interest.

      Russian political practices, such as that of obligatory denunciation slovo i delo , were introduced in Ukraine in this period. Because of the Russo-Turkish War of —9, during which Ukraine served as a base, the Cossacks and peasants suffered tremendous physical and economic losses. During the council's existence the Code of Laws of , which had been begun under Danylo Apostol , was completed but never implemented.

      During the reign of Empress Elizabeth I —62 , her consort and from husband Oleksii Rozumovsky , by birth a simple Cossack who rose to the title of count, influenced her to abolish the Governing Council of the Hetman Office and restore the hetmancy with his younger brother Count Kyrylo Rozumovsky as hetman —64 see also Hlukhiv Council of The new hetman spent most of his time in Saint Petersburg , where he was president of the Imperial Academy of Sciences and deeply involved in court politics and governmental affairs.

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      During his absences from Ukraine, the land was governed by the Cossack starshyna , thus hastening their transformation, begun in the late 17th century, into a typical hereditary, landowning, nobility. The starshyna persuaded Rozumovsky to issue an edict in limiting the free movement of the peasantry. A major setback, however, was the Russian abolition in of Ukrainian import and export duties , a major source of income in the Hetmanate's budget.

      In October he and the starshyna met in council at Hlukhiv and petitioned the empress to renew the Hetmanate's lost prerogatives and to approve the creation of a noble diet modeled on the Polish Sejm. Rozumovsky also requested hereditary rights to the hetmancy for his family. Catherine, however, in line with her general policy of uniformity and centralization, and following Grigorii Teplov's advice, decided to abolish the legal separation of Ukraine and Russia altogether, and in she compelled Rozumovsky to resign as hetman.

      The liquidation of the Hetmanate. Catherine II completed the policy of centralization and institutional Russification that Peter I began in Ukraine and in other autonomous lands of the Russian Empire. In she approved the creation of New Russia gubernia out of the lands of New Serbia and Slobidska Ukraine , and in she restored the Little Russian Collegium this time with four Russians and four Ukrainians. The task of its president, Count Petr Rumiantsev , was to eliminate Ukrainian autonomy gradually and cautiously.

      He neutralized the Ukrainian elite by recruiting their members into Russian service and giving them rank and promotions. In order to introduce taxation and control peasant labor in Ukraine, Catherine ordered a thorough survey of the population and resources of the Hetmanate —the Rumiantsev census —to be carried out. An unexpected complication arose with the strong stand in defense of Ukrainian autonomy taken by the Ukrainian deputies, particularly Hryhorii A.

      Poletyka , at the Legislative Commission Assembly of The Zaporozhian New Sich was destroyed by Russian troops in ; many of the dispersed Zaporozhian Cossacks fled and established the Danubian Sich , and the vast lands of Southern Ukraine were incorporated into the Russian Empire as part of New Russia gubernia and Azov gubernia and developed by their governor Grigorii Potemkin. Catherine promoted the settlement of these largely unpopulated areas by Germans , Serbs, Mennonites , Bulgarians, and others, and the establishment of several new cities on the Black Sea and Sea of Azov to attract foreign trade.

      By all the traditional 10 Left-Bank regiments of the Hetman state were abolished and reconstituted as the new Kyiv vicegerency , Chernihiv vicegerency , and Novhorod-Siverskyi vicegerency and part of New Russia gubernia. In most of Slobidska Ukraine became part of the new Kharkiv vicegerency. The imperial bureaucracy replaced Ukrainian administrative, judicial, and fiscal institutions and social and legal norms with Russian ones.

      In the Cossack regiments were transformed into 10 regular cavalry regiments and the Russian system of conscription and serfdom was extended into Ukraine. The Ukrainian elite acquiesced becaused they benefited from the changes: the charter gave them the privileges of Russian nobility though less than half of those who registered as nobles were recognized as such.

      The Ukrainian church suffered a major setback under the new order: its lands and peasants were secularized, and many monasteries were closed down in The Hetman state and the Cossack social order ceased to exist. Right-Bank Ukraine. In Poland again regained control of the devastated and depopulated Right-Bank Ukraine , and a colonizing movement was organized by the Polish magnates who owned much of the land. With them came Orthodox and Uniate clergy. Cossackdom, however, was not allowed to develop.

      The towns that were re-established were largely inhabited by Jews , who earned their living as innkeepers, artisans, and merchants. Polish gentry were largely attendants at the magnates' courts, and leaseholders or stewards managed their estates. At the peak of the social order were the few wealthy magnate families that owned huge latifundia. For much of the 18th century the Right Bank was a typical noble-dominated society, marked by lack of central authority, oligarchic politics, and extreme exploitation of the peasantry. Without Cossacks , the peasantry was ineffective in resisting the nobility.

      Occasionally minor disturbances broke out, led by runaway peasants who congregated in forests and emerged to attack isolated noble estates. In , when Poland was involved in a conflict with Russia, the first serious haidamaka uprising broke out. Another major one occurred in The most widespread and bloodiest was the so-called Koliivshchyna rebellion of , when the Poles were engaged in another war with Russia see Confederation of Bar and Haidamaka uprisings.

      Thousands of Polish nobles, Jews , and Catholic clergy were massacred. Fearing that rebellion would spread into its possessions, the Russian government sent forces to quell it. Thus ended the last great uprising of the Ukrainian peasantry against the Polish nobles. Russia's expansion was a dominant factor in the history of Ukraine. In the late 18th century its ruler, Catherine II , concentrated on a great drive southward to the Black Sea in order to gain access to the Mediterranean and world trade. Southern Ukraine was thus colonized and urban centers began to develop. While it was liquidating the autonomy of the Hetman state and absorbing the lands of the Zaporozhian Sich , Russia also conquered the Crimean Khanate in and, after annexing it in , gained control of the entire northern Black Sea coast.

      Russia interfered in Poland and influenced political developments there throughout the 18th century, ostensibly to protect its Orthodox population. Thus, by all of Right-Bank Ukraine had been incorporated into the Russian Empire, which now controlled about 80 percent of the Ukrainian lands. The remainder were part of the Habsburg monarchy. Transcarpathia became part of the Habsburg Empire along with Hungary in ; Galicia was taken in the first partition of Poland in ; and Bukovyna was taken from the Turks in and formally incorporated into Austria in Social transformations.

      In the 17th and 18th centuries there were extensive social changes in Ukraine. In Left-Bank Ukraine , the Cossack starshyna evolved from elective officers into a hereditary nobility. By the end of the 18th century they numbered about 2, adult males. Constituting less than 1 percent of the population, they controlled about 50 percent of the land see Rank estates.

      Meanwhile, the status of rank-and-file Cossacks declined drastically. Deprived of political prerogatives by the starshyna , they also encountered debilitating economic difficulties. Obliged to render extremely protracted, and therefore costly, military service throughout the 18th century, many of them fell into debt and lost or gave up their Cossack status and became state peasants. This downward mobility was reflected in the decline of their numbers in active military service: from 50, in to 30, in and 20, in Because the starshyna and Cossacks were not taxed, they often competed successfully with the burghers in local commerce and primitive, small-scale manufacturing and thereby undermined the prosperity of the relatively small urban stratum about 4 percent of the population.

      Even more drastic was the decline in the fortunes of the peasantry. After they became free peasants who lived in self-governing communities and owed relatively minor obligations for use of the land to the Zaporozhian Host. But as the starshyna accumulated more land, it constantly raised the labor obligations of the peasantry. In Ivan Mazepa 's time peasants were forced to work , on the average, two days a week for local starshyna landowners.

      Within a generation the obligations rose to three days and more. The final step in the enserfment of the Left-Bank Ukraine peasantry occurred in , when Catherine II deprived them of the right to leave their landlords under any circumstances. With the introduction of serfdom most traces of the social upheaval and experimentation that began with Bohdan Khmelnytsky 's uprising disappeared, and Ukrainian society became much like the noble-dominated societies of its neighbors.

      Ukraine under imperial rule. From the late 18th century to —18, Ukrainians lived in two large land-based empires. During the reign of Alexander I —25 , the Russian presence in Ukraine consisted primarily of the imperial army and bureaucracy. By the s, during the reign of Nicholas I —55 , the process of establishing a centralized administration throughout Ukraine was completed. The abolition of Magdeburg law in and the Lithuanian Statute in put an end to non-Russian legal influences, elected officials, and municipal self-government in Ukraine. Although the impact of the French Revolution and the Napoleonic invasion of was minimal in Ukraine, secret societies nonetheless arose there as part of the Decembrist movement.

      Its members attempted unsuccessfully to stage the first revolution in the Russian Empire. After suppressing it in , the tsarist government instituted Russification policies on the Right Bank. Harshly implemented by Governor-general Dimitrii Bibikov , they had a major impact on both the Ukrainians and Poles.

      To curtail the influence of the Polish nobles in society and local government, the estates of about 3, nobles were confiscated, and some , were deprived of their status and deported to the east. In the numerous Uniates in the region were forced to adopt Orthodoxy see History of the Ukrainian church. To win over the Ukrainian peasantry and further alienate them from the Polish nobles, in Bibikov introduced Inventory Regulations limiting the obligations a peasant owed his landlord.

      The vast majority of the approximately 2. Their social structure was relatively simple, for the population in eastern Galicia consisted mostly of impoverished peasantry 95 percent and about 2, priestly families. The nobles in Galicia were almost all Poles or Polonized Ukrainians, and Jews made up the overwhelming majority of the small urban population. The socioeconomic development of Western Ukraine lagged behind that of Russian-ruled Ukraine.

      It was one of the poorest regions in all Europe. Galicia was incorporated into the Habsburg Empire during a time of major changes, and Emperor Joseph II developed a special interest in Galicia, viewing it as a kind of laboratory for his educational, social, and economic reforms. After Joseph's death , many of his reforms, especially those pertaining to the peasants, were either subverted by the nobles or rescinded by his conservative successors. The rise of national consciousness. In Ukraine, as elsewhere in Eastern Europe, the rise of national consciousness was primarily associated with the impact of Western ideas especially those of Johann Gottfried von Herder , the French Revolution, and Romanticism and with the birth of an intelligentsia.

      The institutions of higher learning established to provide the imperial governments with well-trained bureaucrats facilitated the development of the intelligentsia. Kharkiv University served as the intellectual center of Russian-ruled Ukraine until Kyiv University assumed this role in the s. Initially, the Ukrainian intelligentsia under Russia consisted primarily of nobles by background. A small minority were priests' sons, burghers , or Cossacks.

      The intelligentsia's numbers were small; eg, prior to Kharkiv University and Kyiv University produced a total of only about 4, graduates. Later, noble representation in the intelligentsia declined and that of commoners, including peasants , rose. Indicative of the first phase of nation-building was the interest shown by the intelligentsia in the late 18th and early 19th century in Ukrainian history, historiography , ethnography, and folklore. Given the central importance of the native language in the maintenance of national consciousness, the Ukrainian intelligentsia was anxious to raise its status.

      Despite their achievements in literature and scholarship, the Ukrainian intelligentsia of the early 19th century continued to view Ukraine and the Ukrainians in regionalist terms, convinced that in cultivating things Ukrainian it was also enriching the cultural heritage of Russia as a whole. In the s a new generation of Ukrainian intellectuals, now based in Kyiv, emerged.

      Among its leaders were the historian Mykola Kostomarov , the author Panteleimon Kulish , and, most important, the poet Taras Shevchenko , whose works have exerted an unparalleled influence on Ukrainians. In they, together with a small group of other Ukrainian intellectuals, began the political phase of nation-building by founding in Kyiv the secret Cyril and Methodius Brotherhood , which was quickly uncovered by the tsarist police. The trials and exile of its leaders marked the beginning of the long confrontation between the Ukrainian intelligentsia, which stood for national rights and social justice, and the Russian imperial authorities.

      In Austrian-ruled Western Ukraine , in the early 19th century the intelligentsia was practically synonymous with the Greek Catholic clergy —the only social group that could avail itself of higher learning. Thus, of the 43 Ukrainian-language books that appeared there between and , 40 were written by priests. The first signs of interest in the native language appeared in Peremyshl , where, in , Rev Ivan Mohylnytsky organized a clerical society for the purpose of disseminating culture and enlightenment and preparing simple religious texts.

      In the s the center of nation-building activity shifted to Lviv , where young, idealistic seminarians captivated by romantic national ideas came to the fore see Ruthenian Triad. Imperial change and reforms. Nationhood became a major political issue in Western Ukraine during the Revolution of —9 in the Habsburg monarchy , which shook the Habsburg Empire and much of Europe.

      Confronted by uprisings in Hungary, Italy, and Vienna itself, and threatened by a Polish revolt in Galicia, the Habsburgs sought to gain popular support by abolishing serfdom and establishing parliamentary representation. These developments provided the impetus for political self-organization of Ukrainians. Rejecting the claims of the Poles to represent the entire population of Galicia, the Ukrainians established the Supreme Ruthenian Council as their representative body and clashed with the Poles at the Slavic Congress in Prague, Thus began a long period of Polish-Ukrainian political conflicts in Galicia.

      Demanding autonomy , the Ukrainians established the first Ukrainian-language newspaper Zoria halytska and the popular enlightenment and publishing society Halytsko-Ruska Matytsia , pressured the Habsburgs to establish a chair of Ukrainian philology at Lviv University , began the construction of the People's Home in Lviv , formed pro-Habsburg militias, and established contacts with compatriots in Bukovyna and Transcarpathia see, eg, Adolf Dobriansky. Thus, the revolutionary climate of allowed the Western Ukrainians to express and organize themselves as a distinct nation for the first time in modern history.

      Russia's defeat in the Crimean War of —6 brought to the fore the empire's socioeconomic backwardness and impelled Alexander II to introduce major reforms. The most important of these was the abolition of serfdom in The impact of this emancipation on the Ukrainians was especially great because 42 percent of them compared to an average of 35 percent in the Russian Empire had been private serfs.

      Other reforms introduced by Alexander in the s included the sale of land to state peasants ; the introduction of local organs of self-government zemstvos to look after education , public health, the mail, and roads; expanded accessibility to higher education ; and the modernization of the court system. Socioeconomic changes. In the latter part of the 19th century, the economic situation in the Ukrainian countryside steadily worsened as heavy redemption payments, taxes, and lack of land impoverished the peasantry.

      Rapid population growth increased land hunger, and great numbers of peasants were forced to emigrate to the Asian regions of the Russian Empire see Emigration, Far East , Siberia, Turkestan ; by almost 2 million Ukrainians had settled permanently in these regions. In the steppe regions wheat was the main cash crop, and 90 percent of the empire's wheat exports—and 20 percent of world production—came from Ukraine. Right-Bank Ukraine , where sugar beets were the chief cash crop, produced over 80 percent of the empire's sugar.

      With the abolition of serfdom the way was finally cleared for industrialization and economic modernization. The first railway track was laid in —71 between Odesa and Balta to facilitate the movement of grain. As the railway network grew, even more Ukrainian food and raw materials were sent northward to Russia in exchange for an unprecedented quantity of finished products.

      As a result, Ukraine's economy, which theretofore had been relatively distinct and self-sustaining, began to be integrated into the imperial economic system. The rapid growth of railroad transportation stimulated the demands for coal and iron. Consequently, between and , and especially during the s, the southeastern Ukrainian Donets Basin , with its rich coal reserves, and Kryvyi Rih Iron-ore Basin became the fastest-growing industrial regions in the Russian Empire.

      Developed by foreign capital, with the aid of state subsidies, by these regions produced almost 70 percent of the empire's coal and most of its iron ore. In over , workers were employed here. During the 19th century Ukraine experienced much urban development. Between and , the population of Odesa, the largest city, grew from , to ,; Kyiv grew from 55, to , and Kharkiv from 50, to , In , however, still only 13 percent of Ukraine's population lived in the population centers officially designated as cities and towns.

      A crucial aspect of the industrial and urban change was that Ukrainians, who constituted 73 percent of the population in , were little affected by them. They constituted 30 percent of the urban population, while Russians formed 34, Jews 27, and other national groups 9 percent of the urban total. Ukrainians were also a minority within the working class —39 percent of the total.