The Belarusian Premier League or the Vysheyshaya Liga (Belarusian: Вышэйшая ліга, top league) is the top division of professional football in Belarus, and is organized by the Belarusian Football Federation. The number of teams in the competition has varied over the years from as high as 17 to the current low of 12, which was first put in place in 2010. Each team plays every other team three times during the course of the season. At the end of the season one team is relegated to the Belarusian First League, and one is promoted from the First League to replace it.
The Belarusian Premier League was organized in 1992. The first participants were: Dinamo Minsk, the only Belarusian side in the former Soviet Top League, five teams from the lower tiers of the Soviet league system, and ten teams who were previous competitors in the Belarusian SSR First League.
Immediately after the organization of the league, it was decided to change its season from a Soviet-style summer season to a European-style winter season. To make that possible, the first season was shortened, consisting of a single round-robin tournament between 16 teams, finishing in mid-summer. Due to the shortened season, no team was relegated from the Premier League and only one was promoted from the First League. The 1992–93 season had 17 teams, but was reduced back to 16 teams for the following season. In 1995, the winter season experiment was proven unsuccessful due to poor weather and field conditions in Belarus in the late autumn and early spring. The season was changed back to summer, and the 1995 championship was again held as a single round-robin tournament. Every season since 1996 has been played in the summer.
Throughout the 2000s, the number of competing teams has changed several times. In 2001, the league was reduced to 14 teams, but expanded back to 16 in 2003. In 2005, after two teams withdrew before the start of the season, the league was once again reduced to 14 clubs, but expanded again to 16 teams in 2008. That same year, the decision was made to gradually reduce the number of teams even more, starting with 14 teams in 2009 and 12 in 2010 onwards. 2012 season was played with only 11 teams due to last minute exclusion of Partizan Minsk.