Belarus has welcomed a U.S. decision to prolong the suspension of sanctions against nine Belarusian companies.
In an October 19 statement, the Foreign Ministry in Minsk also expressed "confidence" that "full removal of all sanctions would lead to the more dynamic development of Belarus-America ties."
The U.S. Treasury Department announced on October 18 that it had extended the suspension of sanctions against nine Belarusian oil and chemical companies until April 30, 2017.
Washington imposed sanctions against the state-owned companies in June 2006 in response to human rights violations in Belarus.
In October 2015, Washington suspended the sanctions for six months after Belarusian President Alyaksandr Lukashenka released several political prisoners and brokered cease-fire talks between Ukraine, Russia, and Russia-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine.
The suspension had been extended by another six months in April 2016.