Tatsiana Manionak for the ODB (Translated from Russian)
It is very important for Belarus to learn from the European experience while implementing the National Transport Strategy. This would allow not only to increase the effectiveness of the Belarusian transport system but also raise social standards for the population. Recently, the EU has set a new target in the transportation area: to increase the level of complex mobility for citizens and simultaneously decrease harmful emissions by 60 %.
This objective is equally relevant for Belarus. Until now the national policy has been oriented to the movement of a vehicle and not of a passenger. State policy in the area of complex mobility is not yet shaped properly in Belarus and the legislation that regulates the area reminds more of a 'patchwork' woven from regulatory provisions included into different legislative acts. Moreover, such notions as mobility of the population, accessibility of transport, public transport, route network, and other have received no official interpretation and are not part of the national legislation.
The Belarusian Union of Transport Workers (BUTW) has made the first step to create a modern legislation in this area in Belarus. In the framework of the Project "EU and Belarus: Sharing Knowledge" during 2012-2013 the BUTW experts have been elaborating the Concept on developing complex mobility of the population based on approximation of Belarusian legislation with the EU standards.
This work grew from the successful cooperation of the BUTW with the Brussels-based Office for a Democratic Belarus (ODB). Since 2008, the ODB has been implementing the expertises exchange programme aimed at integration of the county into the European space through improving professional skills of Belarusian experts in different fields. The goal of this programme is to bring the European standards and best practices, as well as the experience of their implementation in other states of Eastern Partnership to Belarus.