Following the SEEC meeting, a set of documents was signed on Kyrgyzstan’s accession to the organisation.
Also, another set of documents was signed concerning the main macroeconomic policy indicators of Eurasian Economic Union members for 2015–2016, the creation of a common electricity market in the Eurasian Economic Union, and liberalisation of motor trucking services. Decisions were also made concerning free trade between the Eurasian Economic Union and the Socialist Republic of Vietnam and negotiations with China on signing an agreement on trade and economic cooperation.
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President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Colleagues, good evening,
This is our first meeting since the Eurasian Economic Union began working. I am very happy to note that most of the decisions made to launch the Eurasian integration project have been fully implemented within the deadlines we agreed upon. A new economic association has now emerged on the global arena with a single set of rules concerning the movement of goods, services, capital, and labour resources.
Armenia became a full-fledged member of the Union on January 2, and decisions have already been made on Kyrgyzstan’s full-scale accession – I hope that all of this will come into force following ratification.
It is important that all Eurasian Union participants are dispose to deepening integration. Closer trade and investment ties will certainly promote further socioeconomic development in our nations, enhancing our nation’s competitiveness in the global economy and ultimately ensuring improvement in our citizens’ wellbeing.
Eurasian integration is proving to be effective: mutual trade between participating nations grew by nearly $20 billion, trade infrastructure has improved, the share of high value-added goods increased and the share of raw materials has decreased quite significantly – from 40% to 28.9%
We have agreed upon common macroeconomic growth targets for 2015–2016 within the framework of the Eurasian Union, and we have planned a set of measures to stimulate economic development, deepen cooperation in the real sector and improve the business climate.
We suggest considering the possibility of closer cooperation in monetary policy. I am certain that working together, our nations’ central banks could more effectively withstand the negative influence of sharp exchange rate fluctuations.
We are fully aware that this is a matter for the future. Nobody here is going to get ahead of themselves. The monetary policy actions we have agreed upon must be based on integration first and foremost in the economic sphere after achieving a certain level of cooperation. But we can already begin discussing these issues and thinking about it.
Our work to create a common energy market in the Eurasian Union is in its final stage. A concept for a single energy market that would begin to function in 2019 has been submitted for our approval. This document defines the stages of formation, regulation mechanisms, and procedures for mutual energy trade.
We are continuing to create a common transport space in the Eurasian Union. We will need to approve a programme for step-by-step liberalisation of the motor freight transportation market. We are setting ourselves the objective to reduce transportation costs and promote fair competition in this service sector. We will harmonise the rules and requirements for trucking companies.
For national development corporations, we are devising joint lending programmes for exporters to foreign markets. This will help even out the recent drop in our trade with third nations.
We are creating the Eurasian one-stop-shop business system. Its launch will allow us to harmonise our fiscal, customs and administrative procedures regulating foreign economic activity.
Before the end of the year, we will need to seriously update our contractual legal framework: over 50 draft documents are in the works. In particular, we will need to adopt a new Customs Code, and sign an agreement on cooperating in the monetary, financial, and socioeconomic sectors. We will need to complete work on the majority of the documents in time for the Council’s next session, which will be held in October in Astana.
Foreign partners are expressing interest in deepening relations with the Eurasian Economic Union. We have established cooperation with UN agencies. In September, at the 70th session of the UN General Assembly, the Eurasian Economic Union should receive observer status. It is important for our foreign ministries to coordinate efforts when the relevant application will be considered in the UN.
The Eurasian Economic Commission is negotiating free trade agreements with several states. An agreement with Vietnam has been approved and will be signed shortly, and similar documents are being developed at the expert level with Israel, India and Egypt.
The development of economic cooperation between the Eurasian Union and the People’s Republic of China is also promising; I spoke about this today at my meeting with President of China Xi Jinping as well.
Incidentally, the President of China is also interested in this and says that this process could be written into the Silk Road Economic Belt, a project that is being implemented by our friends in China. I feel it would be expedient to instruct the Eurasian Commission to begin talks with China on signing an agreement on trade and economic cooperation.
I think that in the future, we should also consider the possibility of a harmonious alignment of the Eurasian economic integration process and, as I already said, the Chinese Silk Road Economic Belt initiative.
I am sire that close cooperation with Chinese partners will facilitate the flow of investments into Eurasian Economic Union, help create new jobs, and allow us to develop the Eurasian transport potential more effectively.
Thank you very much.