President Vladimir Putin: Allow me to briefly inform you on the results of the meeting that has just taken place. This informal format has become a tradition and gives us the chance to discuss a broad range of topical issues for the community without being tied to a strict agenda.
The main subject of our discussions today was the prospects for creating a customs union within the Eurasian Economic Community. The community’s secretary-general, Grigory Rapota, informed us on the documents necessary for putting in place the legal foundation for such a union. I note that all these documents will take into account the extent to which each member state is ready to participate in this union. What I can tell you now is that we have approved and signed a document instructing the Secretariat and three countries – Belarus, Russia and Kazakhstan – to take the measures needed to put in place the legal foundation for establishing a customs union.
Ultimately, of course, our goal is for all the members of the Eurasian Economic Community to participate in the customs union. The matter is only one of how quickly the required decisions are taken at national level. But there were no doubts expressed that this is our common goal, and we will strive to achieve this goal together.
I think that our unanimous support for the proposal to create a common energy market within the Eurasian Economic Community is an important result. We also gave considerable attention to the question of organising hydroelectric cooperation and the use of hydroelectric resources in Central Asia. This is an issue that we inherited from the Central Asian Cooperation Organisation, one of the organisations that has merged with the Eurasian Economic Community.
Another matter for our serious consideration was the development of nuclear energy. We made a detailed analysis of the possible forms of cooperation in this area within the Eurasian Economic Community. We already have experience and successful examples of cooperation in this area. In particular, Russia and Kazakhstan have signed three memorandums on creating joint ventures in the nuclear sphere. We also discussed the idea of creating a system of international centres to provide nuclear fuel cycle services under IAEA supervision. I am certain that this initiative will open up new opportunities for developing nuclear energy for peaceful purposes.
We made a detailed examination of ties between the Eurasian Economic Community and the Collective Security Treaty Organisation, a subject we also discussed in detail during the summits of these two organisations in June in Minsk. It was in this context that President of Armenia Robert Kocharian also took part in our meeting today, as Armenia is an observer in the Eurasian Economic Community and a member of the Collective Security Treaty Organisation, and we are very grateful to him.
I think that both of these developing integration-based organisations have possibilities to complement each other effectively. After all, we cannot develop the economy if we do not ensure security. Although these organisations work in different areas, their main aims and goals, namely to strengthen stability in our countries and ensure greater security for economic and integration processes, complement each other.
As you know, the Collective Security Council discussed the issue of Uzbekistan’s accession to the Collective Security Treaty Organisation at its session in Minsk in June. Today we took a detailed look at the legal preparations for Uzbekistan’s accession and also signed the decision on its accession to this organisation.
Summing up the results of this summit here in Sochi, I would like to thank the Eurasian Economic Community leaders for the constructive and interested discussion that took place. This discussion was productive, concrete, and took place in a friendly atmosphere. Most important of all is that we have reaffirmed our mutual desire to expand the horizons of our multifaceted cooperation, cooperation that is in the interests of continued economic development in our countries, the development of positive integration processes and ensuring security in the post-Soviet area.
I would like to thank you for your attention. My colleagues and I will have the chance over the rest of today and tomorrow morning to continue informal discussions on all the issues that we looked at and to raise any other matters that any of my colleagues considers important for further discussion. Thank you for your attention.