Facts about Belarus that shock foreigners. And many Belarusians, too. Hello, my friends! My name is Tatiana, I’m Belarusian, and today I’m shooting a risky video about Belarus. The first shocking fact is: it’s impossible to live with the budget which people actually have in Belarus. What does this mean? The living wage (the amount which, in theory, should be sufficient for subsistence) is 231 Belarusian rubles 83 cents. This is 113 dollars. This amount is enough to buy food for a maximum of half a month. Life will be harder, if a Belarusian loses work. Unemployment benefits are enough only for buying food and only for 4 days. How to live the rest of the month is not clear. The second fact is: people in Belarus can be arrested by the police if they clap their hands on square. And by the way, yes, the police is still called «мили́ция», not «поли́ция». You see, in 2011 “silent” actions were happened in Belarus when Belarusians clapped their hands in protest on the square. Since then, it’s not recommended to do that in public places, especially if you are among many people. The third fact is: IKEA furniture is made in Belarus, but there are no IKEA brand stores here. There are several factories in Belarus that produce furniture ordered by IKEA. Belarusians bring IKEA furniture from Poland or from Russia. The fourth fact is: Belarusians produce the largest trucks in the world.
In September, 2013, Zhodino automakers introduced the BelAZ-75710 model with a nominal carrying capacity of 450 metric tons (this is equivalent to 500 “short” tons). The fifth fact is: Belarus used to be called Lithuania.
A few hundred years ago the Grand Duchy of Lithuania was located on the territory of modern Belarus and part of Lithuania, which was called Zhmud or Zemaitiya. It’s not clear why Zhmud began to be called Lithuania and Lithuania begam to be called Belarus, but this is a fact. However, it’s also hard to understand how so happened that Russia began on the territory of modern Ukraine, not in Russia. In any case, Belarusian city Novogrudok was the first capital of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, and the Old Belarusian language was the official language. The sixth fact is: low-cost airlines don’t fly in Belarus.
More precisely, well-known low-cost airlines don’t fly in Belarus, so airline tickets are very expensive here. Many Belarusians prefer to take the train to Vilnius (Lithuania) and then fly somewhere by plane. The seventh fact is: people can go very far from Belarus by train. Maybe, we have difficulties with low-cost airlines in Belarus, but there are no shortage of cheap and long-distance trains. The longest regular railway route from Western Europe is: Nice – Moscow. It’s 3.352 kilometers. And people can go even further from Belarus: the Brest – Novosibirsk train is 4.391 kilometers. The longest route inside Belarus stretches for 876 kilometers. The eighth fact is: there are a lot of swamps in Belarus.
In 1958, swamps occupied 21.7% of the Belarusian territory; there were 7.066 swamps in the country. Land reclamation done its job, and by the year 2002 it’s only 11.4% of the territories are swampy. Dear friends, I hope this information is useful for you and you enjoy this video! Thank you for watching it! Bye!