CSE and CIS
In Poland political parties are bidding which one of them can promise the most on the eve of the elections. Meanwhile, in the Belarusian presidential campaign Alexander Lukashenka is distancing himself from populism.
As public money flows into venture capital funds in Poland, the supply of available financing is larger than the pool of projects fit for investment. One solution to this problem would be to engage start-ups from east of the Polish border.
The history of Belarus applying to join the World Trade Organisation (WTO) is a story of unfulfilled promises to liberalise and privatise the economy. For many countries aspiration to become the WTO member often served as a motivation and explanation for introducing bold economic reforms. But not for the Belarusian authorities who have preferred to imitate engagement in the accession process.
Belarus’s economy remains one of the least reformed in the region – largely because it has been able to rely on help from Russia to avoid a politically risky restructuring which could endanger the authoritarian rule of President Alexander Lukashenko.
Alexander Lukashenko remains firmly in control of Belarus's politics − as shown by the unsurprising result in recent parliamentary elections that saw his supporters take all 110 seats − but his biggest challenge in the next months will come from the economy.