Head of state TV lying about West not selling medicines to Belarus

Ivan Eismant is not ashamed to lie / @rubanau_collage

Ivan Eismant is not ashamed to lie / @rubanau_collage / @rubanau_collage

Ivan Eismant, chairman of Belteleradiocompany, recently accused Western countries of genocide against Belarusians. He justified it with the fact that they stopped selling pharmaceutical products to Belarus because of the sanctions.

"Listen, sanctions have been imposed on us, we can't buy medicines and medical equipment. People are dying. This is genocide on their part. They saw that the import of goods went through Armenia, through Georgia, through Uzbekistan -- they close it there. Die here [in Belarus], die! There will be no medicine here! Women will not have safe deliveries! This is genocide! If you have problems with the authorities, deal with the authorities! What do the people have to do with it?" complains Natallia Eismant's husband in the program "Club of Editors". Other guests of the program actively agree with Eismant.

However, the statements of the Belarusian Radio Company head are questionable. First of all, why should Belarusians die when officials regularly report about the success of import substitution? Second, why is Eismant lying to the Belarusian television audience?

Euroradio explains why Eismant's words are another fake.

Exports have been growing since 2016

According to Eurostat, Belarus increases its spending on European pharmaceutical products every year:

“Умрите здесь!”. Как глава госТВ врёт, что Запад не продаёт Беларуси лекарства
How much Belarus spends on pharmaceutical products from Europe by year / Euroradio

The growth is observed after the protests in 2020, after the landing of the Ryanair plane, after the beginning of the migration crisis and even after the beginning of the war in Ukraine. The same trend continues in 2023. While in 2022 Belarus spent €461.3 million on pharmaceutical products from Europe, in the first half of 2023 the figure was €231.7 million. This is a little more than half of the amount of 2022.

Shipments are also growing when measured in tons:

“Умрите здесь!”. Как глава госТВ врёт, что Запад не продаёт Беларуси лекарства
In 2022, Belarus bought as many tons of pharmaceuticals in Europe as in 2019 / Euroradio

Not counting 2020, when more medicines were needed due to the coronavirus epidemic, Belarus has been buying 4.4-5.3 thousand tons of European medicines every year since 2016. For the first half of 2023, 2.1 thousand tons have already been purchased.

This is quite different from "we can't buy" and "genocide" mentioned by Eismant. Eismant's words are also contradicted by the official position of the Ministry of Health. In June 2022, Health Minister Dzmitry Pinevich said that the collapse of logistics chains due to sanctions is "not without a trace," but there is no disruption in the supply of imported medicines.

“Умрите здесь!”. Как глава госТВ врёт, что Запад не продаёт Беларуси лекарства
Tamoxifen registered in Belarus / rceth.by

Meanwhile, Belarusian officials can create problems with drugs themselves. For example, in the case of drugs for patients with hepatitis C. As Euroradio found out, the Ministry of Health buys not as many drugs as people need, but as many as written in the plans.

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