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Program on reviving Belarusian Chernobyl-hit areas to allow people to live in comfort


BRAGIN DISTRICT, 6 July (BelTA) – A new program on reviving Chernobyl-affected territories is designed to enable comfortable conditions for people to live there. First Deputy Head of the Belarus President Administration Maksim Ryzhenkov drew attention to the fact as he visited Bragin District, Gomel Oblast on 6 July, BelTA has learned.

The central government and the Gomel Oblast administration have to work out a program on developing five districts in the Chernobyl-hit zone, including Bragin District, the official reminded. Specific tasks concerning the construction of housing, infrastructure, and beautification have been set, Maksim Ryzhenkov specified.

The official said that certain legislation amendments need to be implemented in order to achieve the goals. For instance, legislation concerning the employment of young specialists working in Chernobyl-hit areas.

Maksim Ryzhenkov said: "If we want this land to breathe and grow, we need to enable comfortable conditions for people to live here. The new program will take it into account." He pointed out that the program will not be just a collection of ideas. It will include specific instructions on what needs to be built and what equipment needs to be installed.

Public healthcare was discussed in the Bragin District Central Hospital. The hospital has 93 beds while the clinic can welcome 200 patients per shift. The town of Komarin has a hospital with 20 beds and a clinic able to welcome 55 patients per shift. There are also three outpatient clinics and 14 rural health posts in Bragin District. Chief Physician of the Bragin District Central Hospital Igor Kirenya noted that the healthcare institution is fully staffed. Only the ophthalmologist is a problem. The health diagnostics system also constantly develops in the district.

Maksim Ryzhenkov mentioned the close attention paid to public healthcare in the district. "It is important that plans have been made to install modern equipment: the hospital will open a CT scan room, new ambulances will be bought," he specified.

Maksim Ryzhenkov also drew attention to high demographic figures. "It means that people want to live here, that young specialists are willing to come and stay here," he believes.

Prospects of development of timber harvesting and woodworking were discussed as First Deputy Head of the Belarus President Administration Maksim Ryzhenkov visited the Komarin forestry enterprise. The enterprise's Director Aleksandr Degtyarin said that a new timber sawing line was installed here in 2018. It reached the designed output capacity the next year. At present the enterprise operates in the black. The products are constantly sold via the Belarusian Universal Commodity Exchange.

The organization of cultural leisure and sport activities for rural residents was discussed in the Komarin cultural and sport center. It was noted that the center offers one of the district's largest gyms to the locals. All kinds of competitions and games are held in the gym. The gym also has a workout room and a library.

BelTA reported earlier that Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko gave instructions to work out a government program on reviving Chernobyl-hit areas at a government conference in Bragin on 26 April. Timber harvesting and woodworking industry are some of the promising industries for the development of these territories. Naturally attention will also be paid to agriculture, which plays a major role in the economy of these areas. The program needs to be worked out by September.