Lukashenka hits back at small business association

Alyaksandr Lukashenka on Tuesday hit back at Perspektyva over a warning made by the small business association earlier this week...

 

Alyaksandr Lukashenka on Tuesday hit back at Perspektyva over a warning made by the small business association earlier this week, BelaPAN said.

Perspektyva urged Mr. Lukashenka not to require market vendors to produce accompanying documents for their goods, warning that the "untimely and counterproductive" move would cause mass protests and lead to a drop in tax revenues.

Speaking at a government conference in Minsk, Mr. Lukashenka accused Perspektyva and its leader Anatol Shumchanka of attempting to blackmail him, said the government's news agency BelTA. "I would advise them not to make such statements through the media as it could backfire," he said, noting that attempts to scare him were senseless and warning of a crackdown on any mass protest.

Mr. Lukashenka promised that market vendors would be offered "civilized" conditions of work. "If you want to live like they do in the West, we will provide you with such conditions. If you want to live like they do in Maidan [Independence Square in Kyiv], this is not in Belarus," he said, referring to weeks-long anti-government protests in Ukraine.

Mr. Lukashenka urged market vendors to "chase away" Mr. Shumchanka and his associates. "They have and can have nothing in common with you, they need other," he said.