Eurasian American Chamber of Commerce

Moldova joins EAEU as observer

April 28, 2017 by admin


CHISINAU, April 14. /TASS/. The observer status at the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) will not damage Moldova’s relations with the EU, Speaker of the Moldovan parliament, Andrian Candu, said on Friday.

“Any observer status in any organization does not violate the provisions and our relations with the European Union. We have the association and comprehensive trade agreement with the EU, which means that we are at a different level of cooperation,” Candu said commenting on the decision to grant Moldova observer status at the EAEU summit in Bishkek.

Symbolic gesture

At the same time, he expressed the view that the rapprochement with the EAEU promoted by Moldova’s President Igor Dodon “will not bring any benefits.” “We are again dividing the society instead of looking for solutions and projects to unite Moldova’s citizens,” the speaker added.

Candu recalled that, under Moldova’s legislation, “any international treaties should be ratified by parliament to have legal effects. “That is, this attempt to acquire EAEU observer status will bring no legal effects. This is largely a symbolic aspect,” he underscored.

Legal or historic?

Moldovan Prime Minister Pavel Filip earlier said that the agreements with the EAEU signed by Dodon carry no legal weight, “because Moldova is a parliamentary republic. Although the president has the right to sign and conclude agreements, they must be ratified by the parliament,” he noted.

For his part, Dodon described the decision made in Bishkek as “historic, which was expected by most citizens of the country.” He recalled that, according to polls, 42% of the republic’s citizens favor integration into the Eurasian Economic Union, while 35% support the European integration promoted by the ruling coalition of pro-European parties.

The Moldovan leader earlier emphasized that weakening economic ties with Russia was a consequence of the Moldova-EU association agreement signed in 2014, which envisages the creation of a free-trade zone. After that, Moldova began losing the market of Russia, which was the country’s major trading partner. Attempts to compensate for these losses in the EU market were futile.

According to sociologists, Dodon is the most popular politician in the country, 50.7% of Moldova’s citizens trust him. Prime Minister Filip and parliament speaker Candu have the confidence of 4.9% and 1.9% of the respondents respectively.

Status granted

On Friday, Kyrgyzstan’s capital Bishkek hosted a meeting of the Eurasian Economic Union’s Supreme Council, which brought together the presidents of Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova and Russia. Moldova’s request to grant it the observer status in that association was approved at the meeting.

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EAEU Customs Code signed by heads of state

December 26, 2016 by admin

лидеры ЕАЭС

ST. PETERSBURG, December 26. /TASS/. Presidents of four member-states of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) signed its Customs Code, board chairman of the Eurasian Economic Commission (EEC) Tigran Sarkisyan said on Monday. The document was not signed by the president of Kyrgyzstan, the official said earlier.

“Presidents of four countries signed all the presented documents, including the Customs Code…Kyrgyzstan signed the Customs Code. Only the declaration of establishing joint foreign economic activity was not signed on the part of Kyrgyzstan,” Sarkisyan said.

The new Customs Code of the EAEU will replace the Customs Code that was adopted in 2009. The document is to lay foundations for switching to the common customs procedures within the EAEU.

It took three years to design the new code. The document envisages new approaches to IT-based customs operations, introduces more convenient algorithm of interaction between business and government agencies, minimizing paper work and meetings. In addition, it unifies customs operations for all countries of the union to the maximum.

Once the new document comes into effect the Eurasian Economic Commission will define price and weight “ceilings” of duty free trade, which should be unified for all the member-states.

On the national level the countries will be able to independently set lower norms of duty free import of goods that are moved as items of mail. The members of the union agreed that from 2018, they will start to gradually lower the celing for duty-free import of goods from foreign Internet stores to the EAEU countries.

In 2018, the limit will be set 500 euros. Import of goods for the sum above the limit of 500 euro will envisage a payment of 30%, but not less than 4 euro per 1 kg. In 2019, the ceiling will be lowered to 200 euros. Above this limit the payment will amount to 15%, but not less than 2 euro per 1 kg. The new Customs Code is expected to come into force on July 1, 2017.

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Mongolia expresses interest in joining EAEU

November 5, 2016 by admin

Vladimir Putin, Elbegdorj Tsakhia

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) is of great interest for Mongolia, the country’s Ambassador to Russia Banzragch Delgermaa said Saturday.

“As you know, the process of integration and establishment of regional blocs is underway in the world, and that is why Mongolia, located between such powerful states as Russia and China, and without access to the sea, is glad to join some economic blocs and work effectively, In this regard, the Eurasian Economic Union is of great interest for us,” Delgermaa said in the interview to Rossiya 24 channel.

Delgermaa noted that joining the EEU was earlier discussed with former Armenian Prime Minister Tigran Sargsyan, who is currently the chairman of the Eurasian Economic Commission, the executive body of the EEU.

The Eurasian Economic Union is a Russia-initiated regional political and economic bloc which aims to streamline the flow of goods and services between its members, namely Russia, Kyrgyzstan, Armenia, Belarus, and Kazakhstan. Moreover, concerning relations with Russia, Mongolian Ambassador to Russia Banzragch Delgermaa said on Saturday that Mongolia hopes to boost trade and economic relations with Russia,

“The potential of trade relations between the two countries is very big, earlier we had joint ventures, unfortunately we do not see any investment projects yet. But at the SCO summit in Tashkent this year a program of economic corridor was signed, on which we hope. We also hope that the investment environment would improve,” Delgermaa told the Rossiya 24 TV-channel in an interview.

She said that the countries had positive political relations but noted that there were misbalances in bilateral trade with the turnover amounting to $1.2 billion and Russian export to Mongolia – over $1 billion.

Delgermaa pointed out that Russia had always been a good neighbor of Mongolia – especially during last 95 years. Earlier on Saturday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and his Mongolian counterpart Tsendiyn Munkh-Orgil had exchanged congratulatory messages marking the 95th anniversary of establishing diplomatic ties between the countries.

Russia and Mongolia have almost a century-long history of friendly relations. Mongolia declared its independence from China in 1911 following the Xinhai revolution in China. In 1921, Russian White warlord Roman von Ungern-Sternberg helped to free the Mongolian capital of Urga from Chinese troops thus protecting the country’s independence. The same year, Mongolia witnessed a revolution that resulted in improving relations with Soviet Russia. In late 1930s – early 1940s, the countries joined their efforts resisting expansion of the Japanese Empire.

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Modern world should have no room for closed trade blocks

July 22, 2016 by admin


Moscow stands for transparency in the development of integration processes and maintains that there should be no place for closed trading unions in the ffmodern world, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Igor Morgulov said on Friday.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The integration within the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) is based on the principles of openness and the dialogue with Russia’s neighbors will be built in compliance with them, he added.

“Russia believes that the development of integration processes should be transparent and open. There should be no place for closed trade and economic unions. The integration structures that are being established should be absolutely inclusive and open,” Morgulov stated at a press conference.

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Eurasian integration processes to be open for Western partners

May 31, 2016 by admin


MOSCOW, May 31. /TASS/. Moscow will continue efforts to develop integration processes in Bigger Eurasia, projects on this space will be open for Western partners, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Igor Morgulov said on Tuesday.

“Now we heave a triunique structure of the development of integration processes in Bigger Eurasia: talks between the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) and China, the program of coupling the EAEU and the Silk Road, and the implementation of a wide partnership initiative – EAEU-SCO-ASEAN,” he said at an international conference dedicated to Russia-China relations  “I am confident these three projects will yield a powerful synergic effect and will lay a basis for the formation of a common economic space involving Russia, China and our partners from the EAEU and the SCO, including the powerful economies of India and Iran,” he noted. According to Morgulov, it is important that this structure will be open for Western partner. “We will continue to promote this long-term and promising work,” he added. The Eurasian space is set to see an all-encompassing trade and economic partnership emerging, similar to the Trans-Pacific Partnership, Russia’s First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov said Tuesday. “The whole Eurasian space is set to see an all-encompassing trade and economic partnership emerging. This partnership, which is primarily emerging between the EAEU and China, will be open for other countries to join,” he said, adding that respective “talks will be launched without delay.”

The EAEU-China cooperation

China and the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) may sign joint documents on trade and economic partnership within two years, Shuvalov said. “It would be great to sign particular documents within two years,” he said, adding that “this is a challenging negotiation process.” According to Shuvalov, China is interested in setting up a free trade zone with the EAEU. “However, we initially said that the EurAsEC (Eurasian Economic Community) and China would create such a trade and economic partnership. This is more about the rules of the game regarding development of free flows of goods and services as well as protection of investment in this huge area. We also discussed with China the possibility of creating a free trade zone between SCO countries and China, which surely implies reduced tariffs or even slashed to zero common customs tariffs on Chinese goods supplied to Russia and other countries,” the first deputy PM said. According to Shuvalov, a decision has been made to balance flows of commodities for all producers to be on an equal footing.

The leaders of the EAEU member-states have instructed the group of negotiations regarding the need to explore non-tariff barriers in the first place and propose ways to remove them, Shuvalov said. “We are also aware of the fact that the People’s Republic of China is taking interest in reduced tariffs for promoting goods made in China. However, we’ll deal with the issue in such a way as to ensure mutual interest,” he added. Iran may join the trade and economic partnership between China and the EAEU, Shuvalov added. “As I have understood from the discussion of this issue by the [EAEU] leaders, Iran is one of potential participants in this partnership,” Shuvalov said. Partnership with China is of crucial importance for the EAEU, Chairman of Eurasian Economic Commission’s Board Tigran Sarkisyan told a briefing on Tuesday. “There are many issues on the agenda, which concern relations with third countries and integration associations,” he said. “EEC will start the negotiation process within the framework of the mandate that is given to us, and we will build the relations first and foremost in the interests of economic entities of our countries,” Sarkisyan said. According to him, regular consultations will be held in this area. “For our part we will take necessary steps to make the Chinese market open up for our enterprises,” Sarkisyan said.

The EAEU-EU Ties

Russian President Vladimir Putin welcomed Kazakhstan’s initiative to organize a conference aimed at establishing cooperation between the EAEU and the European Union (EU). “We welcome the initiative of our Kazakhstan’s partners on holding an international conference aimed at establishing cooperation between the EAEU and the EU,” he said, adding that “it is necessary that the Eurasian Economic Commission joins” the work on thrashing it out.

The EAEU-Serbia trade regime

The member-states of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) will hold talks with Serbia on unification of trade regime, Chairman of Eurasian Economic Commission’s Board Tigran Sarkisyan told a briefing on Tuesday. “Today the decision has been made to start talks with the republic of Serbia on unification of the trade regime between the Eurasian Economic Union, its member-states and that country.” In particular, the presidents of the EAEU countries have decided to start talks with Serbia on creation of a free economic trade zone between the republic and the Union, EAEC Trade Minister Veronika Nikishina said “Following the results of our talks we will sign a new agreement about a free trade zone: between EAEC, its members-states and the republic of Serbia,” she said. Currently, three countries of EAEC – Russia, Kazakhstan and Belarus – have free trade zone agreements with Serbia. At the same time there are deviations between some provisions of those agreements.

Two other members of EAEC – Armenia and Kyrgyzstan – have the most favored nation treatment regime with Serbia. The minister is confident that now it is the right moment to discuss what other goods the countries of the EAEC could supply to Serbia and to ask for most favored nation treatment for them. “Considering that the most favored nation treatment has already been established with these counties these talks could be very intensive. But so far we cannot say exactly when the new agreement may be signed and come into effect,” she said. EAEU oil and gas markets The concepts of creating common oil and gas markets within the EAEU by 2025 have been generally approved, Russia’s First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov said. “Today president reported on the concepts of creating the markets of gas, oil and petroleum products,” he said, adding that “those concepts were approved.” According to Shuvalov, the remaining disagreements regarding those documents were removed after May 20 in Yerevan while the next stage is to prepare intergovernmental agreements for setting up a common hydrocarbons market across the Eurasian Economic Union by 2025. “We’ve in principle agreed upon the issue today,” he added. The combined effect of the creation of a common gas market for the EAEU by 2025 will top $1 bln per annum and $8 bln for the oil market Putin said at the meeting of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council. “Today we are one step closer to the creation of a common hydrocarbons market by 2025, which has been subject of much discussion and argument at some point,” Putin said. “Respective documents have been prepared, which stipulate equal competitive positions across the Union, in order to reach the combined effect of over $1 bln per annum in the gas sector and up to $8 bln per annum in the oil sector,” he added. Also, the EAEU member-states have agreed to create a common electricity market by 2019, the president said, adding that the respective concept has been approved and the program is being prepared. According to experts’ estimates, after the task is implemented the EAEU states’ GDP will additionally boost by $7 bln, Putin added.

Putin has invited the member-states of the EAEU to participate in Russia’s import replacement program. “The Union’s states joining the import replacement program implemented by Russia is promising,” Putin said. “We invite all our partners to have joint production of equipment and components in more than 25 areas.” The president said this particularly concerns machine building, consumer goods manufacturing, electronics manufacturing industry and agriculture. Russia announced plans to implement its import replacement program amid Western sanctions.

The EAEU-Vietnam Agreement.

The agreement on a free trade zone between the EAEU and Vietnam will come into operation starting from the end of this summer, Shuvalov said. “Today we approved the agreement that will foster our free trade agreement with Vietnam. The ratification procedures are almost finalized and hopefully the agreement will come into force starting from the end of summer,” Shuvalov said. As it was reported earlier the agreement on setting up a free trade zone between the EAEU and Vietnam was signed by heads of governments of Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Armenia, Kyrgyzstan and Vietnam within the meeting of the Eurasian intergovernmental council on May 29, 2015. This is the first document of its kind for the EAEU signed with an external partner. The agreement stipulates mutual commitments of the sides involved on easing access to the markets for commodities. The document particularly outlines the conditions of tariff liberalization of trade between the EAEU member-states and Vietnam via reducing or slashing to zero the rates of import duties for a large number of goods.

“We consider the issue extremely important as international opportunities are the main way for Russian entrepreneurs and EAEU businessmen on the whole to shift from economic recession to upswing,” he said. Shuvalov added that the agenda on potential agreements with SCO countries will be further developed, and said that the issue of making an agreement on free trade zone with Serbia had been touched upon at Tuesday’s meeting. “The Russian president informed the colleagues about the requested items announced within the Russia-ASEAN summit, including the one from Singapore’s prime minister on the possibility of making a free trade zone agreement,” the first deputy PM said.

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EAEU to resolve problems surrounding Ukraine within the CIS Free Trade Zone

January 11, 2016 by admin


Members of the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) will develop in the next six months response mechanisms to the EU-Ukraine free trade area agreement at the unilateral level, Viktor Khristenko, Chairman of the Eurasian Economic Commission, said Monday.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — “During the first half of 2016, we should develop legal mechanisms, which would allow national governments to realize their right to conduct unilateral actions in the framework of a supranational body, when they have the right to carry out responsive measures under an effective management mechanism,” Khristenko told reporters following a meeting of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council, the EEU decision-making body composed of the leaders of member-states.


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EAEU to get Observer Status in UN General Assembly

October 12, 2015 by admin


The Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) to be granted observer status from the United Nations (UN) at the next General Assembly, the Minister of The Eurasian Economic Commission (EEC) on Economy and Financial Policy Timur Suleimenov said on Thursday. “We’re working on this (receiving status — TASS) through our legal department and ministries of foreign affairs of EEU member-states. Hopefully, we’ll be granted this status at the nearest meeting of the UN General Assembly,” he said. Suleimenov added that the Eurasian Economic Union has already established itself as an international legal entity and automatically possess juridical status. “I think this (UN observer) is a formalization of our status, which by no means limits us neither in our rights during talks with third countries, nor in talks with each other,” the Minister said. Belarus, which is currently chairing the EEU, initiated the draft resolution on granting the EEC, UN observer status.

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Russian President proposes Currency Union

March 20, 2015 by admin

Russian currency, rouble: banknotes and coins close up

It’s time to think about the prospects of creating a currency union between Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan, President Vladimir Putin has said.

“We think the time has come to talk about the possibility to form a currency union in the future,” Putin said Friday at a meeting with his Kazakh and Belarusian counterparts Nursultan Nazarbaev and Aleksandr Lukashenko in Astana. It’s easier to protect the common financial market when working shoulder to shoulder, Putin added.

At the Friday meeting in Astana the heads of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan – all member states of the Eurasian Economic Union – are discussing a joint game plan to tackle the global economic slowdown and challenges in the energy market that has seen Brent benchmark plunging to about $54 per barrel as of March 20 from its peak of $115 per barrel last June. The EEU countries can gradually integrate in the currency union, Aleksey Likhachev, Russian deputy minister of economic development, commented.

“I would suggest moving step by step, exactly as all EU member states enter the eurozone, gradually creating all these common financial institutions,” Likhachev said, adding that if such an order comes from the member leaders, all the sides will immediately start negotiations.

Despite a wide range of benefits, trade within the EEU may be followed by certain risks, Likhachev believes. One of the main risks is that the absence of borders and the common market for service make trade extremely dependent on fluctuations in currency exchange rates, he said.

“That means any slightest fluctuation in national currencies of today’s four and of tomorrow’s five (Kyrgyzstan) EEU countries, that are related neither to trade nor to demand, create a huge trade imbalance,” he said, adding that officials are looking for ways to smooth these problems out, and trade and industry institutions are in a constant dialogue. “In the same enclosed space, where goods, services, capital and labor are constantly moving, the existence of different currencies exacerbates the risks,” Likhachev said. Apart from the economy, there are also political and social issues that are yet to be discussed, he added.

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EAEU to continue work with US despite tensions

December 10, 2014 by admin

Despite tense relations with the United States, the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) plans to cooperate with the United States in different areas of economy and trade.

WASHINGTON, December 9 (Sputnik) — The Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) members continue cooperation with US partners despite difficulties on political level, Viktor Spassky, the director of the Integration Development Department of the Eurasian Economic Commission (EEC), told Sputnik Tuesday.

“We continue relations between businesses of our members, and with the United States on bilateral level, and the results in trade are positive,” Spassky said. Even though the relations with the United States were tense, the cooperation in different areas of economy and between various businesses continued, he added.

Spassky also noted that, according to the 2013 data and the data for first part of 2014, the trade between EEU countries and the United States has seen some positive dynamic. “Trade between the EEU members and the United States was higher by 12 percent, and import of the union members was higher by 20 percent, and it’s the latest statistics, without any sanctions,” he explained.

Spassky added that the officials were preparing several contracts to be signed in the future once the sanctions imposed by Western countries on Russia were no longer in place.

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Uzbekistan to begin consultations on Free Trade Zone with EAEU

December 10, 2014 by admin


TASHKENT, December 10. /TASS/. Integration processes underway on the post-Soviet space should provide for the further development of trade and economic relations between Russia and Uzbekistan, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday.

“All integration processes taking place on the post-Soviet area are definitely aimed at improving trade and economic climate and everything must be done to put it in practice, so that nothing would obstruct our bilateral trade and economic cooperation and provide for the expansion of relations,” Putin, who is currently on an official visit to Uzbekistan, said.

According to the Russian president, Russia and Uzbekistan have big plans for cooperation in the sphere of energy, nuclear sector and personnel training. He said that a total of 12,000 students from Uzbekistan were currently studying in Russia and the Russian State University had its branch in the Uzbek capital of Tashkent. Putin also said that Russia would maintain its cooperation with Uzbekistan in the military and technical sector. The Treaty on the establishment of the Eurasian Economic Union comes into effect on January 1.

Russia will start talks with Uzbekistan on a free trade zone between the post-Soviet trade bloc and the Central Asian republic, Putin said.

“We have agreed today to begin consultations concerning a possible signing of a deal between Uzbekistan and the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) on a free trade zone,” Putin told journalists after his meeting with Uzbek President Islam Karimov. “I would like to underline that these will be only consultations,” Putin added.

The Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) is based on the Customs Union of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan and is a new integration association, which will start functioning from January 1, 2015 instead of the Eurasian Economic Community (EurAsEC), which officially ceased to exist on October 10.

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