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Belarus - Беларусь

Strusta is a freshwater lake in the Braslaw Lakes national park of Belarus
Landscape around Strusta, a freshwater lake in the Braslaw Lakes national park of Belarus.
Image: zedlik

Location map of Belarus. Where in the world is Belarus?
Location map of Belarus

Flag of Belgium
Flag of Belarus

Destination Belarus, officially the Republic of Belarus, a Nations Online country profile of the former Soviet republic. The landlocked country in Eastern Europe borders Russia to the northeast, Ukraine to the south, Poland to the west, and Lithuania and Latvia to the northwest.

With an area of 208,000 km2, Belarus is the largest landlocked country in Europe; compared, it is somewhat smaller than the island of Great Britain (229,848 km2), or slightly smaller than the US state of Kansas.

Belarus has a population of 9.4 million people (in 2020). The capital and largest city is Minsk. Spoken languages are Belarusian (official) 24%, but 70% speak Russian (official), there are small Polish- and Ukrainian-speaking minorities. Ethnic Belarusians, who speak a language closely related to Russian and Ukrainian, make up more than three-quarters of the population.

What is Belarus known for?
Potatoes, tractors, and being one of the poorest countries in Europe by total wealth. Belarus is known as the last country in Europe run by a dictator (Alexander Lukashenko).
Belarus is the country with the lowest unemployment rate in Europe, and no, it is NOT part of Russia. But, the predominantly spoken language is Russian, not Belarusian. They have five Nobel Laureates in Belarus, and two Israeli presidents were born in the country, which is now Belarus, Chaim Weizmann and Shimon Peres. Also born in Belarus was the artist Marc Chagall.
About 40% of the country is forested; Bia?owie?a Forest is one of the last and largest remaining parts of the immense primeval forest that once stretched across the European plain. Most Belarusians are hospitable and friendly people. There is a vivid gambling industry (only in Minsk)

Republic of Belarus | Рэспубл?ка Беларусь | Respublika Bielarus


After seven decades as a constituent republic of the USSR, Belarus attained its independence in 1991. It has maintained closer political and economic ties to Russia than any of the other former Soviet republics. Belarus and Russia signed a treaty on a two-state union on 8 December 1999, envisioning greater political and economic integration.

Although Belarus agreed to a framework to carry out the accord, serious implementation has yet to take place. Since his election in July 1995 as the country's first president, Alexander LUKASHENKO has steadily consolidated his power through authoritarian means.

The Constitution revision by national referendum of 24 November 1996 gave the presidency greatly expanded powers and became effective 27 November 1996, revised again 17 October 2004, removing presidential term limits.

Government restrictions on freedom of speech and the press, peaceful assembly, and religion continue.


Country Profile

Official Name:
Respublika Bielarus
int'l long form: Republic of Belarus
int'l short form: Belarus
formerly: Belorussia, Byelorussia, White Russia

ISO Country Code: by, BLR

Time Zone: Eastern European Time
Local Time = UTC +2h (summer +3)
Actual Time: Mon-Nov-9  17:29

Country Calling Code: +375

Capital City: Minsk more


Official Sites of Belarus

Belarusian Government House in Minsk
The Government House in Minsk on Independence Square houses the two chambers of the National Assembly of Belarus. The monument in the center is a statue of Vladimir Lenin.
Image: Suicasmo

Political System of Belarus
According to the constitution, Belarus is a "democratic, social state." In 1996 there was a constitutional amendment that greatly expanded the powers of the president. President Alexander Lukashenko gained the right to extend his term of office and to govern by decree.
The amendment also greatly restricted the powers of the bicameral National Assembly.
The president is the head of state; the head of government is the prime minister.
The Prime Minister is proposed by the President and needs approval by the Parliament of Belarus.
Belarus' government is exercised by the Council of Ministers of Belarus, the central organ of the Belarusian executive. The government is accountable to the President, and its powers are determined by the constitution.

Official Government Websites

Due to the current situation in the country, some pages may not work.
Note: External links will open in a new browser window.

Official website of the Republic of Belarus.

Presidential Administration Belarus
The official internet portal of the President of the Republic of Belarus.

House of Representatives
The House of Representatives is the lower house of the National Assembly of Belarus.

Council of Republic
The Council of the Republic (the upper house) is a chamber of territorial representation and consists of 64 members.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Official website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Belarus.

Diplomatic Missions
Permanent Mission of the Republic of Belarus to the UN
Permanent Mission of Belarus to the United Nations.
Embassy of the Republic of Belarus
Washington D.C.

National statistical portal of the Republic of Belarus
Belarus in numbers.

Protest rally against Lukashenko in Minsk, the capital city of Belarus
Protest rally against the regime of President Alexander Lukashenko. Belarusians in front of the Great Patriotic War Museum at Victory Avenue in Minsk, the capital city of Belarus.
Image: Homoatrox


Maps of Belarus

Belarus Map
Map of Belarus (click map to enlarge)
Image: ?


 Map of Belarus
Political Map of Belarus.

Google Earth Google Earth Belarus
Searchable map and satellite view of Belarus.
Google Earth Google Earth Map of Minsk
Searchable map and satellite view of the capital of Belarus, Minsk.

Map of Central Europe
Map of countries of Central and Eastern Europe.
Map of Europe
Political Map of Europe.



News of Belarus

Belarus Newsstand

Online News from Belarus

Belarus has been heavily criticized by rights bodies to suppress free speech, muzzle the press, and deny the opposition access to state media. (BBC)
In Belarus, critical journalists and bloggers are threatened and arrested, leading news sites are blocked, access to information is restricted, and media diversity is unknown. (RSF)

News agency
Belarusian Telegraph Agency (BelTA)
Official website of the state-owned national news agency.

Sovetskaya Belorussiya (Советская Белоруссия)
Soviet Belarus - main government daily. SB also publishes Respublika daily and Narodnya Gazeta daily.

Respublika (РЭСПУБЛIКА)
Public affair - Council of Ministers daily.

Narodnaya Gazeta (Народная газета)
The People's newspaper - National Assembly daily.
Беларусь Сегодня

Hazeta Slonimskaya
An independent local newspaper published in Slonim.

Nasha Niva
Nasha Niva is one of the oldest Belarusian weekly newspapers.

Zvyazda (Звязда)
Star - Belarussian daily, sponsored by National Assembly and Council of Ministers.

BDG Delovaya Gazeta (БДГ Деловая газета)
The business newspaper - private, business daily.

Narodnaya Volya (Народная воля)
"The People’s Will" - independent newspaper founded by Iosif Seredich, a opposition daily; banned from government-run distribution network, printed in Russia.

BelGazeta (БелГазета)
Bel is an analytical weekly. Published since September 1995 in Minsk.

BelaPAN (БелаПАН)
Private, non-governmental independent Belarusian news agency, partly also in English.

TUT.BY is an independent news portal and the most popular news web site in the country.

Belarus TV
The Belteleradiocompany is a government run network.
Nationwide TV (ONT)
Joint venture with Russia's Channel One.

Radio Belarus
The government-run Belarussian Radio operates three national networks.

International News sources

Belarus Digest
Belarus Digest provides non-partisan analysis of Belarus-related events written by Belarusians specifically for an English-language readership.
Belsat TV
Belsat is an exile satellite television station in Poland.
Exile station based in Poland.



Arts & Culture of Belarus

Bolshoi Theatre of Belarus; ltr: The Nutcracker, The Queen of Spades, and Peer Gynt
Images of performances of the Bolshoi Theatre of Belarus; ltr: The Nutcracker, The Queen of Spades, and Peer Gynt.
Images: Bolshoi Theatre of Belarus

Arts & Culture

Marc Chagall A la Russie, aux anes et aux autres
A la Russie, aux anes et aux autres or The Aunt in the Sky. Marc Chagall painting 1911. Chagall was born in July 1887 in Liozna, Belarus.
Painting: Marc Chagall

Bella Belarus
Bella Belarus is an online art gallery of Belarusian contemporary art.

Festivals in Belarus
A guide to festivals and events in Belarus.

The National Academic Theatre of the Republic of Belarus
The National Academic Bolshoi Opera and Ballet Theatre of Belarus.

Museums of Belarus
Portal site to Belarusian museums. (partly in English)

National Art Museum
National Art Museum of the Republic of Belarus. The largest museum in Belarus is located in the capital Minsk; it has more than 25,000 sculptures, drawings, and paintings from the 11th to 20th centuries from all over Europe and Asia.

Great Patriotic War Museum in Minsk
The museum is dedicated to the Great Patriotic War that was fought between occupied Russia (Soviet Union) and German Nazi invaders.

National Historical Museum of the Republic of Belarus
The museum offers exposition and exhibition related to the history of the country. On display are archaeological findings, fine art, icons, ceramics, prints, folk art and folk costumes, and numismatic.

Belarusian State Museum of Folk Architecture and Rural Lifestyle
The open-air museum in Minsk displays a collection of historical relics that demonstrate the traditional folk culture in the country.

Ethnographic museums in Belarus
List of ethnographic museums in Belarus with description and address.

Other Venues
National Library of Belarus
The Library houses the largest collection of Belarusian printed materials.

Palace of the Republic
The venue of the Department of the State for special and cultural-entertainment events is located in Minsk.

Drum Ecstasy is a Belarusian rock performance using bass guitar, three drums, and the sounds of electric saws and electric drills.

Building of the Belarusian National Library in Minsk
The main entrance to the building of the Belarusian National Library on the eastern outskirts of Minsk.
Images: Julian Nitzsche


Business & Economy of Belarus

A "Belarus" 3022 from current production of Minski Traktorny Sawod
A "Belarus" 3022 tractor from the current production of Minski Traktorny Sawod, a major Belarusian company that produces agricultural and forestry vehicles.
Images: Dgolnik

Economy of Belarus
The economy of Belarus is based on industry, agriculture, and a growing IT business. The main industrial center of Belarus is Minsk.
Belarus defines its economic system as market socialism, but it resembles more a planned economy in which the central government directs the production and distribution of goods.

The country had a relatively well-developed industrial base, but it is now outdated, inefficient, and dependent on subsidized Russian energy and preferential access to Russian markets. Russian energy subsidies accounted for up to 10 % of GDP and allowed the government to subsidize inefficient state enterprises.

Belarus' agricultural base is largely dependent on government subsidies. Almost all state-owned collective farms would immediately go bankrupt without state support. [1] Agriculture accounts for about 7% of the country's GDP.

About 80% of the Belarusian industry remains in state hands, and foreign investment has virtually disappeared, apart from sizeable Chinese investments into the agribusiness. [2] Several businesses have been renationalized. State-owned entities account for 70-75% of GDP, and state banks make up 75% of the banking sector.
Source: The World Factbook -- Belarus

In terms of the Current Account Balance (CAB) by country, Belarus stands with a negative balance between Togo and South Sudan. In 2018 Belarus ranked 12th in the list of the poorest countries of the European continent. [3]

National Bank of the Republic of Belarus
The Central Bank of Belarus. The main office of the National Bank is located in Minsk.

Belarusian Chamber of Commerce and Industry
Official pages of the Belarusian CCI. (in English and Russian)


Belavia Boeing 737 refueling and boarding at Minsk National Airport.
Belavia Boeing 737 refueling and boarding at Minsk National Airport.
Image: Vasyatka1

Belavia Belarusian Airlines is the flag carrier of Belarus., headquartered in Minsk.

TransAVIAexport Airlines

Belarusian cargo airline.

Minsk-2 National Airport
Minsk National Airport is the primary air gateway to the Republic of Belarus.

Belarusian Railway
The state-owned railway company is one of the leaders of the national economy. Belarusian Railway operates the rail transport network in the country. The company transports 75% of all cargo and 45% of all passengers in the country.

Major Belarusian Companies and Brands

Belarusbank is the largest bank in Belarus. The majority shares of Belarusbank are owned by the State Property Committee of the Republic of Belarus.

Belarus Hi-Tech Park
HTP is Belarus' answer to Silicon Valley. HTP is one of the leading innovative IT clusters in Central and Eastern Europe. Among the residents of Belarus' HTP are EPAM Systems, IBA Group, Ciklum, Itransition, Intetics, and Bell Integrator. World of Tanks (, Viber, Apalon apps, MSQRD,, and Prisma are products of Belarus Hi-Tech Park. [4]

Beltelecom is the state-owned national telecommunications company.

Dana Holdings
Dana Holdings is a real estate, investment, and development company with offices in Neuchatel, London, Moscow, Minsk, and Belgrade. Dana Holdings operates in Russia, Belarus, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Serbia, and Croatia. The current flagship of Dana Holdings portfolio is Minsk Mir, a city-in-the-city development of residential, retail, leisure and office space in the capital of Belarus.

Gazprom Transgaz Belarus
Gazprom Transgaz Belarus operates important natural gas transit pipelines through Belarus, the Northern Lights and the Yamal–Europe pipelines. These pipelines supply Europe, especially Germany, with Russian natural gas.

Minsk Tractor Works
MTZ (Minski Traktarny Zavod) MTZ is a tractor plant in Minsk that produces agricultural and forestry vehicles. It is part of an association with plants across Belarus that make parts and attachable tools for tractors and other vehicles produced by MTZ.

Alivaria Brewery
Alivaria Brewery is the oldest of the currently existing breweries in Belarus. Alivaria is now part of the Carlsberg Group, which holds 67.8% of shares in the brewery.

The "Belarusian Automobile Plant" is one of the world's largest manufacturers of large and extra-large dump trucks and other heavy transport equipment for the mining and construction industry.

Luch "Minsk Watch Plant"
Mechanical watches from Minsk.

Minsk Kristall
Belarusian vodkas.

Belarusian motorcycles.

Stalinist architecture at station square in MinskBelarus
Stalinist architecture in the center of Minsk at station square.
Image: Hanna Zelenko


Tourism in Belarus

Sailboats on Lake Narachk, Belarus
Sailboats on Lake Narach (Nara?), the largest lake in the country.
Image: Zedlik

Destination Belarus - Travel and Tour Guides


Discover Belarus.
The highlights of the country for visitors are (among many others):

Mir Castle complex in the town of Mir,
Nesvizh Radziwi?? Castle, a 16th-century palace with a Baroque chapel in the town of Nesvizh;
The Brest Fortress was built in the 19th century and is today one of the most visited sights in Belarus.
The outdoor Brest Railway Museum with historical locomotives.
Gorky Park in Minsk, President Lukashenko likes to visit this place frequently, but at these times, access to this part of the park is closed to the public.
Belarusian National Arts Museum, the country's largest art museum is located in Minsk.
Lake Narach is the largest of the many lakes in Belarus.

Belarus related Sites

Official website of Belarus' National Tourism Agency.

The Presidential Tour Operator of the Republic of Belarus.

Belarus Tourism
State institution ?National Tourism Agency? provides information about Belarus.

Wikivoyage Belarus
Wikivoyage worldwide travel guide page about Belarus.

Minsk (Минск)
Official website of the capital city.

Official website of Brest, the country's second city.

Official website of Gomel.

Grodno (Hrodna)
Grodno, or Hrodna is a city at the Neman rivern in western Belarus.

City of Grodno, Belarus Belarus
A street in Grodno, the Jesuit Cathedral of Grodno in the background.
Image: Alexxx Malev


UNESCO World Heritage Sites

Aapravasi Ghat, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Port Louis, Mauritius
Nesvizh castle courtyard.
Image: Guy Fawkes

UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Belarus
There are four UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Belarus, three cultural and one natural (see the List)

World Heritage Site Architectural, Residential and Cultural Complex of the Radziwill Family at Nesvizh
The complex is located in central Belarus, 125 km by road southwest of Minsk; it consists of the residential castle and the mausoleum Church of Corpus Christi.
Official website of the Nesvizh National Historical and Cultural Museum.

World Heritage Site Mir Castle Complex
Mir Castle is a fortified castle from the 16th century located in the Grodno region of Belarus. It is one of Belarus' national symbols, and since 2000 the castle complex is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The fortress was built in the early 16th century and became the first privately owned castle in Belarus. In 1568 the citadel came into the possession of the Radziwill noble family. Today Mir Castle is a museum and displays exhibits about the life and times of the Radziwills (Radziwi??s).

World Heritage Site Struve Geodetic Arc
The Struve Geodetic Arc is one of the most remarkable attempts in human history to explore and determine the shape and size of the Earth. The Struve Arc is a chain of survey triangulations stretching from Hammerfest in Norway to the Black Sea, through 10 countries and over 2,820 km (1,750 mi). Besides its importance for geodesy, the Struve Arc is also an early example of international scientific cooperation. The inscribed property includes 34 of Struve's original station points, five of which are located in Belarus.

World Heritage Site Bia?owie?a Forest
Belovezhskaya Pushcha National Park is a vast forest complex located on the border between Poland and Belarus. The park is home to the largest free-roaming population of European Bison.

European Bison (Bison bonasus) in Belovezhskaya forest of Belarus.
European Bison (Bison bonasus), also known as wisent, in Belovezhskaya forest.
Image: Frank Vassen


Education in Belarus

Palácio Universitário campus Rio de Janeiro
The National Academy of Sciences of Belarus in Minsk.
Image: Sckeeter

Belarusian State University
BSU is the leading national higher educational institution. The university is located in Minsk and was founded in 1921.

Belarusian State University of Informatics and Radioelectronics
BSUIR is today one of the most important scientific and university institutions in Belarus, offering 30 specialized study programs.

Brest State University
BrSU was founded in 1945 and named after the Russian novelist Alexander Pushkin. The university is located in the center of Brest and consists of 11 faculties. The university maintains close ties with Poland.

Gomel State University
Gomel State University has 12 faculties, two research institutes, and a Confucius Institute in partnership with China.

The National Academy of Sciences
The scientific research academy was founded in 1929. It is the highest scientific institution in Belarus.



Environment & Nature

Rockformation at Serra dos órg?os National Park
Farming in Kapyl District Belarus. Here the farmer can really take his "Belarus" tractor to the limit.
Image: Egor Kunovsky

BelAL - Belarus Agricultural Library
BelAL is the national information center for agriculture, food, and forestry in Belarus.

Belarusian Nature
Site with some information about Belarusian Nature.

Green Belarus
The green movement in Belarus.

Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Protection of Belarus
Official website of the Ministry of natural resources and environmental protection of the Republic of Belarus.


Belarus History

The "Courage" monument within the war memorial complex on the western outskirts of Brest.
Image: Alexxx Malev

War of 1812 in the territory of Belarus
Part of the National Library of Belarus virtual projects.

Famous Belarusians
Learn more about some of the renowned personalities of Belarus.

History of Belarus (Great Litva)
Comprehensive information about the History of Belarus.

History and Famous Personalities
Linklist of history resources.

Belarus History
Encyclopaedia Britannica entry for Belarus history.

History of Belarus
Wikipedia article describes the history of Belarus.


Additional Information


Amnesty International: Belarus
Amnesty International is a non-governmental organization focused on human rights.

BBC News Country Profile: Belarus
Country profiles by the British public service broadcaster.

BTI Transformation Index
Belarus Country Report 2020 by Bertelsmann Stiftung.

GlobalEDGE: Belarus
Belarus ranking by the Global business knowledge portal.

The Heritage Foundation: Belarus
The Heritage Foundation index of Economic Freedom.

HDR - Human development index Belarus
Human Development Indicators data.

FAO: Belarus
UN Food and Agriculture Organization.

Human Rights Watch: Belarus
HRW conducts research and advocacy on human rights.

Nuclear Threat Initiative: Belarus
NTI Nuclear Security Index entry for Belarus.

OEC: Belarus
The Observatory of Economic Complexity provides the latest international trade data.

Reporters Without Borders: Belarus
RSF (Reporters sans frontières) is an international NGO that defends and promotes media freedom.

Wikipedia: Belarus
Wikipedia Belarus page in many languages.

Worldbank Data: Belarus
World Development Indicators database.

The World Factbook -- Belarus
CIA World Factbook Belarus Page.


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