BY is the abbreviation for Belarus, the 84th largest country in the world. Officially Republic of Belarus, Belarus is a country located in East Europe, bordering 5 countries – Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Russia, and Ukraine. Minsk is the capital city of Belarus. Major cities include Minsk (population: 1,742,124), Homyel (population: 480,951), Mogilev (population: 369,200), Vitebsk (population: 342,700), Hrodna (population: 317,365), Brest (population: 300,715), Babruysk (population: 220,517), Baranovichi (population: 168,772), Borisov (population: 143,919), and Pinsk (population: 130,777).
- Capital: Minsk
- Language: Belarusian, Russiana
- Area: 207,595 km2
- Population: 9,491,800
- Currency: Belarusian ruble (BYN)
- Time zone: UTC+3
- Calling code: 375
- ISO 2-Letter Abbreviation: BY
- UN 3-Letter Abbreviation: BLR
- Internet TLD: .by
- State Government Website: http://president.gov.by
List of Belarus Acronyms
The most commonly used abbreviations about Belarus are BY which stands for Belarus and BYN which means Belarusian ruble (Belarus currency). In the following table, you can see all acronyms related to Belarus, including abbreviations for airport, city, school, port, government, and etc.
Belarus is a low-lying country with no coastline. The highest mountain is only 346 meters above sea level. and the landscape consists mainly of low hills and dots. Almost one third of the country is covered by dense forest areas. In the south, the landscape is characterized by ants intersected by rivers and lakes. The country has one of the largest remaining primeval forest areas in Europe. The climate is continental with very cold winters and hot summers.
The biggest environmental problems in Belarus are related to emissions from old Soviet factories and heavy industry. The emissions lead to polluted rivers and water, and large air pollution in heavy industrial areas. The country was also hit hard when an atomic reactor in Chernobyl, Ukraine, exploded in 1986. The radioactive waste caused large agricultural and forest areas to become unusable and hundreds of thousands of people had to move. In retrospect, the number of birth defects and cancer cases has increased significantly.
Today’s Belarus was inhabited by Slavic tribes during the great migrations in Central Europe around 400-500 years or so. When the empire collapsed as a result of Mongol invasion in the 13th century, Belarus became part of the Lithuanian duchy. The duchy, which later became the Lithuanian-Polish Commonwealth, was in constant war with its surroundings until it was divided in the late 18th century. Most of today’s Belarus was then incorporated into the Russian tsarist kingdom. After the Russian October Revolution in 1917, Belarus declared itself an independent state. However, independence lasted only two years before the country became a sub-republic in the Soviet Union.
During World War II, Belarus was occupied by Germany, and more than a third of the population was displaced or killed. After the war, Belarus became one of the most important industrial centers in the Soviet Union. The industry made the sub-republic the richest in the Union. When the Soviet Union disintegrated in 1991, Belarus again became an independent republic.
Society and politics
Belarus is a republic where the president is the head of state, the leader of parliament and the military commander-in-chief. The president is elected in direct elections for 5 years, electing himself the government, appointing Supreme Court judges and the Constitutional Court chair, as well as half the members of the court (a court interpreting the Constitution). Since 1994, the country has been ruled by a president who has gradually become more authoritarian. After a constitutional amendment in 1996, there is no limit to how many times the president can be re-elected. The elections are criticized for being undemocratic, and the president is criticized for suppressing the opposition. The media and the internet are controlled by the state.
The country is closely linked to Russia. They have tried to form their own union, but the process has taken time and no one knows for sure whether the union plans will be realized. Belarus has been criticized for gross human rights violations. Several non-governmental organizations, regime-critical journalists, minorities and opposition politicians have been imprisoned or persecuted. Belarus is also the only remaining country in Europe where the death penalty is practiced.
Economics and Commerce
Over 80 percent of the economy of Belarus is owned and controlled by the state. After independence, several sectors were privatized, but since 1994 the state has regained control of most. This “market socialism” has made the country economically isolated and prevents foreign investment. The economy has been characterized by large swings, high inflation and widespread corruption. This has led to major cuts in welfare benefits such as pensions, health insurance and the education system. However, Belarus has one of the highest living standards compared to other former Soviet republics.
The economy depends on the country’s close relations with Russia. Oil and gas from Russia account for over half of total imports. The country also gets paid before being a transit country for Russian oil and gas to the Western European market. Around 10 per cent of the population is employed in agriculture. Potatoes, flax, cattle and pigs are the most important products. A quarter of the population is employed in industry and heavy industry. The workshop industry, weapons production, the textile industry and the chemical industry are the largest industries.