Competitiveness is the Key to Success

Competitiveness is the Key to Success

Innovations ECONOMY OF BELARUS Competitiveness is the Key to Success In nine months 2007 the share of new products in the total industrial output of...

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Innovations

ECONOMY OF BELARUS

Competitiveness is the Key to Success In nine months 2007 the share of new products in the total industrial output of Belarus exceeded 30% Gennady SVIDERSKY, Deputy Minister of Industry of the Republic of Belarus Throughout the world the production of high-quality and competitive goods is viewed as the pivotal goal of national economy, which fuels the country’s development and cements its standing in the international arena. For companies of the Ministry of Industry of Belarus, which produce almost one forth of Belarusian exports, improving competitiveness means introducing more science-intensive and innovative products. In order to keep positions in foreign markets, manufactures have to introduce innovation technologies, to invest in the upgrade of production facilities, to boost their R&D activities, to focus on personnel issues. The main objectives of the innovation policy of Belarus are listed in the State Innovation-Based Development Programme for 2007-2010 and the Programme of Innovation-Based Activities of the Ministry of Industry for 2006-2010. Due to the programmes, as early as in 2010 the share of new products in the total industrial output of Belarus will reach 25%; 156 companies will certify their quality management systems to ISO 9001; the degree of depreciation of main production facilities will be reduced to 73.8%; the share of investments in equipment, tools and implements will reach 75% of the total capital investments.

Mechanical Engineering is Top Priority

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oday the main innovation activities of companies under the Ministry of Industry are focused on mechanical engineering. The country has developed special sci-tech programmes to promote development of mechanical engineering. They envisage financial support of specific R&D projects and pre-production models manufacture. Thus, a wide gamut of cutting-edge equipment and hardware will be designed within the State Programme “Mechanical Engineering” and its sub-programmes “Automobile Engineering, Special-Purpose Equipment, Automobile and Tractor Electronics and Elect­ri­ cal Engineering”, “Tractor Engi­ neering”, “Quar­ry Equip­ment”,

“Diesel Engineering”, “Combine Harvester Engine­ering”. What innovation-based products will be made in Belarus by 2010? These are MAZ trucks of the new generation, including roadtrains of increased cargo capacity with 4x2 double-axis prime movers and 98-102 cubic meter body space, road-trains with triple-axis prime movers and 105-110 cubic meter body space, Euro-4 prime movers, new truck MAZ-4370, new MAZ buses. The list of new products will also include logging equipment, such as harvesters, forwarders, trailer-type chipping machines. Belarus will export dump-trucks with the capacity ranging between 45 and 320 tonnes. As for the agricultural hardware, a new grain harvester with the carrying capacity of over 14 kg per second and a

new sugar beet harvester are now being developed. It is also noteworthy that Union State programmes enhance competitiveness of the Belarusian mechanical engineering. Thus, under the programme “Autodiesel” (2005-2008) Belarus will design and launch the production of new heavy haulers, diesel engines, systems and components meeting international ecological standards (Euro-3 and Euro-4) as well as efficiency, safety and reliability standards. Such Belarusian giants as Minsk Automobile Plant (MAZ trademark), Minsk Engine Works (MMZ trademark), Vitebsk Plant of Electrical Measuring Instruments and others are engaged in the programme. Production of new machines, tools and systems requires upto-date equipment. That is why the state programme “Technologies and Equipment of Mechanical Engineering” envisages

BelAZ dump trucks are ready for shipment

implementing a wide range of research projects under the subprogrammes “Machines and Instruments”, “Technologies of Mechanical Engineering”, “Foundry Technologies”, “Optical Machine Tool Industry, Technologies of Optical and Mechanical Production”. Belarusian machine tool manufactures will take part in upgra­ding BelavtoMAZ, Minsk Tractor Works, Gomselmash, Minsk Engine Works, as well as companies of the petrochemical, fuel and energy industries and Belarusian Railways as production of high-quality competitive goods relies on a wide range of metal cutting, multi-operational and NC machines, metal flow gear and precision furnaces. All these implements will be designed and produced in Belarus in accordance

with programmes of retooling of the major state-run manufactures. The state sci-tech programme “Radioelectronics and Microelectronics” will promote competitiveness of the country’s radioelectronic industry. The

purpose of the programmes is to develop means of data reception, transmission and display; microelectronic technologies, components and equipment; telecommunications and instrument making.

Structure of Programmes of the Ministry of Industry for 2006–2010 State Programmes of Industrial Development

Automobile and Tractor Engineering

Machine-Tool Manufacture

Rural Revival

Development of Radioelectronic Industry

Scientific Support Programmes (State Sci-Tech programmes) Technologies and Equipment of Mechanical Engineering

Mechanical Engineering

GALS-Technologies

Radioelectronics

Microelectronics

Means of Data Reception, Transfer and Display

Microelectronic Technologies, Components and Equipment

Sub-Programmes Automobile Engineering, Special-Purpose Equipment, Automobile and Tractor Electronics and Electrical Engineering Tractor Engineering Diesel Engineering Combine Harvester Engineering Quarry Equipment

Machines and Tools Technologies of Mechanical Engineering Foundry Technologies Optical Machine Tool Industry, Technologies of Optical and Mechanical Production

Applied Research Programmes

Radioelectronics, Telecommunications, Instrument Making

Programmes and Sub-Programmes of the Union State

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ECONOMY OF BELARUS

Innovations

Minsk Motor Works, a 6-cylinder engine production facility

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New Project, New Production, New Products The key to conquering the global market is the refreshing of the offering range, production of new goods. The development and production of innovation goods is crucial for both a particular company and the national economy in general. Due to the innovation-based development programmes, the Ministry of Industry of the Republic of Belarus plans to set up eight new companies and production facilities by 2010. Two of them have already been commissioned, particularly, a seamless hot-rolled pipe facility at Belarusian Steel Works (the first products were made in autumn 2007) and the washing machines manufacture at Atlant’s new plant of household appliances (opened on January 19, 2007). Integral is about to launch production of 0.5/0.35-micron integrated circuits. A project on production of Belarus-921 tractors is in progress at Smorgon Assemblies Plant. Bobruisk Plant of Tractor Spare Parts is set to launch the production of new agricultural machine

A new plant of household appliances Atlant put in operation in January 2007

MTZ-320. Besides, Unison will produce new cars and Horizont new household appliances. Innovation-based development programmes also envisage setting up new production facilities at active manufactures and upgrading the latter by introducing cuttingedge equipment and high technologies. A total of 123 projects of the kind will be implemented. As

a result, Belarusian manufactures will produce new science-intensive goods highly competitive both domestically and internationally. It goes without saying that modernisation projects require great capital investments. The most expensive upgrading projects are implemented at Belarusian Steel Works, Minsk Automobile Plant, Minsk Engine Works, Minsk Tractor Works, Borisov Car and Tractor Electrical Equipment Plant (BATE) and several other companies. In January-September 2007, capital investments in companies of the Ministry of Industry of the Republic of Belarus totalled Br 940.1 billion in comparable prices, or up 37.6% from the same period 2006. The main investment sources were companies’ funds and bank loans, including loans provided by foreign banks. The overall loans approximated $320 million with the biggest share channelled into Belarusian Steel Works. Minsk Automobile Plant, Amkodor and some other companies also used loans to retool their production facilities. The main lenders were Germany, the Russian Federation, Switzerland, Italy and Austria. Due to the innovation activities, the Belarusian industry met

Amkodor new equipment

ECONOMY OF BELARUS

all its nine-month socio-economic targets. The industrial output grew by 13.5% when the target was 8.5%; exports soared by 37.4% when the target was 16%. Imports reached $3,272.2 million. On the whole, the output of new products by the companies of the Ministry of Industry exceeded 30% in the nine months 2007.

Hand in Hand with Science Development of innovation products is impossible without scientific work and study of international experience. The Ministry of Industry has been cooperating with the National Academy of Sciences and universities via implementing state sci-tech programmes, concluding direct contracts, setting up laboratories and research centres, sci-tech organisations, etc. In accordance with the Programme of Innovation-Based Activities of the Ministry of Industry, by 2010 over 200 modern technologies and more than 700 new science-intensive products are set to be developed. Over 7,000 designers, technologists, researchers and test engineers are involved in the process. The vast majority of research and engineering personnel work in R&D centres of corporate research partnerships. I would like to say some more words about corporate research

partnerships. Operating at GDPforming manufactures, these institutions help set up new high-tech production facilities to ease companies’ transition to a new technological level. Specialising in the manufacture of end-products for a certain market segment, corporate research partnerships efficiently enhance competitiveness and anchor sustainable foreign economic policy. They operate at Minsk Tractor Works, Belarusian Auto Works, Bel­avtoMAZ, Minsk Engine Works, i.e. CIS major manufactures producing tractors, trucks, heavy

haulers, diesel engines, as well as at Belarus’ largest producer of combine harvesters Gomselmash and Belarusian Steel Works. The abovementioned associations account for up to 70% of the output of the Ministry of Industry. They incorporate sci-tech centres which design new products in mechanical engineering, tractor and combine harvester engineering, engine building, etc. Owing to close cooperation between science and production Belarus has developed a wide range of trucks, tractors, agricultural hardware, radio electronic appliances and other A new coach Neman 5202 meets international ecological standards

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ECONOMY OF BELARUS

Innovations

Minsk Engine Works puts $1.5 million a month into production development

Minsk Automobile Plant produces over 200 types of vehicles

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MADE IN BELARUS Both for Ground and Asphalt Belshina specialists have developed a new tyre model for driving-wheels of Belarus MTZ 2022 tractors and other selfpropelled machines.

goods. The exports of these goods have been constantly growing. A strategic area of raising competitiveness of Belarus-made products is implementing up-todate technologies at all stages of their life cycle. State programmes ensure international technological integration and reduce the time necessary to launch the production of new goods. By the way, in accordance with the Programme of Innovation-Based Activities of the Ministry of Industry all the design centres of Belarus’ major manufactures will be computerised in 2010. Software support of all production cycles is crucial for enter-

ing international markets and for raising competitiveness of products of mechanical engineering. This objective is pursued by the state sci-tech programme “GALSTechnologies” for 2005-2010. Belarusian Auto Works, Minsk Tractor Works, Vityas are involved in the programme. The main executor of “GALS-Technologies” is the United Institute of Applied Informatics of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus. The programme is focused on the development of principles, approaches and documents of technical regulation for broadening application of IT in the Belarusian industry.

A special tread pattern of the crossroad capability R-1 enables vehicles to drive both off-road and on hard surfaces. Bel-136 tyres also help reduce fuel consumption. Belshina is one of the largest tyre manufactures in Europe. It produces about 200 models of tyres for cars, trucks, heavy-haulers, construction vehicles and cranes, buses, coaches, tractors and agricultural hardware. Belshina exports about 60% of its output.

New Freezer from Atlant Atlant Co. has started producing a new M-7003 freezer equipped with electronic control and indication units The main advantage of the new product is that you can choose the temperature ranging from 16 to 26 degrees below zero by pushing one button. The temperature is displayed on the digital indicator. Due to an electric control unit the freezer automatically turns off if utility-supplied voltage steps down to 175 volts or steps up over 260 volts. An M-7003 freezer has six food storage sections and a section for rapid freezing of pelmeni, berries and other small foodstuffs. Food baskets are made of transparent plastic. Atlant is the CIS and Europe’s largest producer of household refrigerators and freezers. The company also offers built-in electric range burners, electric kettles, washing machines, refrigerated cabinets. The company incorporates Minsk Refrigerator Plant, Baranovichi Machine-Tool Plant and Household Appliances Plant. The company exports over 70% of the make.