Belarus’s six biggest cities (Hrodna, Vitebsk, Homyel, Brest, Minsk, Mogilev) are hosting a series of information meetings with Polish experts who talk to representatives of Belarusian administration and business about the potential of business clusters, which are geographic concentrations of companies from the same or similar industries. Using practical examples, they discuss Polish and European experiences of how clusters are built and operated, and present the benefits the Belarusian economy could draw from the presence of enterprises and institutions in such concentrations.
The meetings are conducted by Dr Mariusz Citkowski of the University of Białystok, and Sebastian Rynkiewicz, coordinator of the Metal Processing Cluster. Both are specialists who can look back on years of practical experience in building and managing business clusters, having been involved in the functioning of the Metal Processing Cluster, which is one of Poland’s Key National Clusters.
Large attendance and lively discussions with the expert at the meetings in Hrodna, Vitebsk and Mogilev go to show that such initiatives are important and much needed in Belarus. The project attracted wide coverage in Belarusian media, with reports on the meetings published by such outlets as the Belarusian Telegraph Agency (BelTA), Ekonomicheskaya Gazeta, 21.by, Office Life, and Yezhednevnik.
According to participants, representatives of Belarusian administration and business need know-how in the form of specific and practical solutions informed by the Polish and European experiences which could be transferred and integrated with the local economic ecosystem.
The meetings are part of the project “Implementation of the Cluster System in Belarus,” which is carried out by the Podlaska Regional Development Foundation as part of the Polish development cooperation programme of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland.