Belcoopsoyuz to become supplier for SOK/Inex Partners

The Finnish company SOK/Inex Partners got interested in Belarusian food and suggested to Belcoopsoyuz to become its supplier. The agreement was reached during the talks involving Sergei Sidko, the Chairman of the Board of Belcoopsoyuz, and Hannu Pellinen, Sourcing Director at SOK/Inex Partners.

Following the talks, the sides signed a letter of intent, which will entail specific business proposals.

According to Sergei Sidko, Belarusian consumer cooperatives supply any agricultural product. “We successfully execute this function. We can arrange delivery of prefabricated products, for example, those manufactured cooperative industrial enterprises and other domestic producers. Belarusian consumer cooperatives can offer concentrated juices, frozen berries mixes, various pickles and sauerkraut, and provide the necessary information about the quality of products and prices,” Sergei Sidko said.

According to Hannu Pellinen, yields in many European countries reduce due the climate change. “Therefore one of the reasons we have come here is to study the opportunities of food supplies from the European countries. We consider the Belarusian market as a promising outlet. The sphere of our interest mainly rests on tinned vegetables, fruit, berries, jam, grocery and confectionary products,” Hannu Pellinen stressed.

SOK/Inex Partners has one of the largest trading networks in Finland and holds 43% of the retail market. Its annual net income makes up €600 million.

The foreign economic activity is one of the top priorities of the consumer cooperation. Annually the Belcoopsoyuz companies export products amounting to $45 million and import $20-25 million worth of goods. The companies sell into 30 countries. Russia is the biggest trading partner which accounted for 62% of the total export in 2009. The largest export partners in the EU are Finland which imported $5.6 million worth of goods (13%), Lithuania - $5.2 million (12%), Poland - $2.7 million (6.3%), Latvia - $0.7 million (1.5%).

In January-October 2010 the Belcoopsoyuz companies exported $45.6 million worth of products, up 42% over the same months last year. Trade surplus made up $28.8 million.

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