Image of Belarus is a multi-colored necklace of the country

«Small cities of Belarus is a necklace of our country» - Larissa Nikolaevna Smirnova, deputy director of  "Institute for Regional and Urban Planning of Belarus ", the deserved architect of  Belarus has told at a forum «Image of Republic of Belarus: positioning and promotion of cities and regions». From 213 city settlements of the country 173 (81,2 %) are small cities and settlements of city type. 1,2 million inhabitants live in them (12,2 % of the population of the country). Small cities will live– the country live, it was the main idea of Larissa Smirnova speach. "Does not follow artificial «to exhaust »people in small cities, it is necessary to do them attractive», - has noted the deserved architect.

In acknowledgement to this thesis visitors from Russia have expressed. Andrey Stas, the general director of company Stas Marketing Partners, has resulted a number of examples from Europe when offices of known transnational companies are in small cities with population of 2-3 thousand persons. Denis Vizgalov, the manager of projects of Fund «City economy Institute», has told that image of country very much depends on a policy of the state: government has made something successfully and image of the country has gone upwards, have admitted a lack – and image has gone downwards, thus image of cities remains invariable. It is more grateful to be engaged in image of cities and places, they create image of all country.

f it is associated image of the country with a necklace it is possible to tell that various branches of republic, event in the country, such as “Slavianski Bazaar”, «Children's Eurovision 2010», «World championship on hockey 2014», also are beautiful elements in this necklace. As a result, if image of the country will be considered through a necklace prism it turns out multi-colored, very unique and beautiful.

Very interesting associations in relation to Belarus have been stated by participants of a forum. So Andrey Stas has noticed that «Belarus is the most east of all western countries of Europe, and the most western among all east countries». Natalia Leshchenko, the expert of Institute of State ideologies INSTID (Great Britain) has told that Belarus associates with woman protecting calmness and stability in the house. Denis Vizgalov has noticed that is better to do of own minuses pluses, instead of to expostulate on lacks of Belarus. For example, when say that Belarus too quiet and sluggish country, it is possible to use this fact as advantage: come to Belarus to listen to silence, after all in the world so it is a lot of vanity and noise that it will be the best place for the rest. If about Belarus say that it is dictatorship, in it also there are advantages. After all, it is possible to pick up the registration under such "image" and to involve tourists. Even in Moscow the Kremlin is not the most desired for visiting, but KGB building on Lubjanke. If Belarus associated with a bog in it also there are delights, after all a bog are lungs of Europe and a unique ecosystem which now you will seldom meet in Europe.

The criticism of the Russian experts towards the roller which has made a noise on the Internet of Artem Predko about Minsk, where the nature and buildings in Minsk is shown in the accelerated mode, was interesting. First, practically there are no people in a roller, Alexander Pankruhin, the professor of the Russian Academy of Public Service, the author of book «Territory Marketing » speaks. Secondly, everithing is shown in such fast rate that causes irritation from so a fast and fussy life. Thirdly, large buildings of National library, Minsk-arena, the Palace of Republic are in a roller which are inherent in a dictatorial mode.

Apogee of a forum was competition of creative works on creating the concept of image of Belarus. With presentation of works it has been presented six finalists. All works were very original and interesting. Work of students from the Gomel state technical university of a name of P.O.Suhogo which have presented work under the name «Make your city more brightly!» . Ideas with creation of color pedestrian crossings and creation competition on the best show-window have been stated in work. Idea of creation on the Internet of "Tourist's-scheduler" has been presented in other work of teachers of the Higher school of tourism BSEU, when any interested person can under the interests in an automatic mode create round across Belarus. Work from advertising agency "Prosto" became the winner of competition - «Travell with light baggage», and the previous works have divided among themselves the second place. The main aim of work was to raise interest to sights and the nature of Belarus. Considering insufficient development of an infrastructure in the country, ready one - two-day tourist routes under various subjects have been offered.

Company MTS has acted as the competition partner which has given prizes and took part in jury. Alexander Shevelevich, advertising agency "Krin" was the chairman of jury, as a part of jury representatives of companies "Milavitsa", "Aljuteh", Association of the advertising companies also have entered. «A competition lack, - the head of the organizer of The Forum of the Center of strategic development Anatoly Akantinov has noted, - that many works have been devoted to tourism. There were no works devoted to investments, export. Though one of works of the Belarus vodka « Bulbash Zubrovaja »devoted to advancement can be ranked as the export goods».

At The Forum the special attention has been given questions of mentality and identity of Belarus nation. Nina Shidlovskaja, the Chairman of board of the International public association «Union of Belarusians of the world "Batskavshchyna", has come up with idea that while Belarusians do not realize the identity with the history, pride of the country, creating image of the country will be difficult. This performance has been made in the Belarus language and has caused big discussion.

Julia Zelenskaja, National agency of tourism of Belarus have shown possibilities of event marketing and tourism, having suggested to have a national holiday of world level «White Russia» and "Kupale", Yaroslav Mihajlovich Zavgorodny, general secretary of Hockey Federation of Republic of Belarus who has told about aims and a course to preparation for the World championship on hockey 2014 and Olga Salamaha, Belteleradiocompany who has told about carrying out of the Children's Eurovision 2010.

Participants of The Forum have received the necessary information on a course of action, have caught enthusiasm, have shown impatience of carrying out of the second forum about image of Republic of Belarus. There was a set of ideas and useful acquaintances for realization of professional problems following the results of action. The command of adherents which will advance according to the lights image of Belarus was generated following the results of The Forum, after all creation of image of the country is business of each citizen of the country.

The Press Secretary of The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Republic of Belarus Andrey Savinyh has told that it is necessary to createу at the state level coordination group consisting of representatives of the government, business, public associations and professionals on creation and development of image of Republic of Belarus. The state can’t alone create image of the country, consolidating actions of all society are necessary. Andrey Savinyh has noticed that now in frameworks the Ministry of Foreign Affairs goes preparation of the document of information activity on foreign markets on the nearest fifth anniversary in which is considered sach directions: investments, export, tourism, the persons influencing on Belarus (mass-media, experts), the international organizations.

The forum partner was Establishment «New Eurasia», as the organizer of The Forum was Center of strategic development «Marketing systems», general information partner was TUT.BY, the partner of competition was MTS company, organizers of competition - ArS-kommunikejshnz, portal М and Association of the advertising organisations.
Organizers of The Forum will continue discussion about image of Republic of Belarus on a site and will prepare the circular on results and offers of a forum to state bodies.

I International Forum «Image of Republic of Belarus: positioning and promotion of cities and regions» is only the first step to the consolidated construction and development of image of the country. Organizers hope that this initiative will be supported, and participants of The Forum will incur various initiatives in its spheres of activity.

Anatoly Akantinov