President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Colleagues,
We are holding the first meeting of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council this year. First, I would like to welcome Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan. Once again, I congratulate you, Mr Pashinyan, on your election to such a high office.
Let me note that today we have a busy agenda. We have to sum up the results of the union’s activities and make a number of strategic decisions to further deepen integration.
Russia, which chairs the Eurasian Economic Union’s bodies this year, has presented a comprehensive programme of joint activities. I will single out some of its priorities, such as establishing unified goods and services markets, promoting trade and investment ties and strengthening production and technology cooperation.
In addition, we believe it is necessary to maintain our course of brining our countries’ financial and credit policies closer together and building new and more efficient transport and logistics links. We have already achieved a lot in many areas: internal trade, as well as exports to third countries, are growing; the export structure is improving; the share of products with high added value is expanding; new joint businesses are emerging; and new prospective investment projects are being launched. As a result, the gross domestic product of each union member is growing.
It is important to continue advancing integration processes. We believe we have good opportunities for close cooperation in such spheres as nuclear and renewable energy, the environment, medicine, space, tourism and sports. It would also be useful to focus on social and humanitarian cooperation and education as well as interregional and border ties.
I would like to note that the main goal of the Russian chairmanship is to strengthen our union and give an additional boost to bringing the five economies closer together, and, what is more important, to comprehensively develop our states.
Colleagues, I would like to single out an issue that we will be discussing in this restricted format meeting. I am referring to the draft resolution on Eurasian Union observer state status prepared by the Eurasian Commission.
As I can see, all members of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council support this decision, which means that we can grant observer state status to the Republic of Moldova today.
I expect you to approve this proposal following the discussion, and President of Moldova Igor Dodon will be able to take part in the expanded meeting as an observer.
Now, let me give the floor to Chairman of the Eurasian Economic Commission Tigran Sargsyan to speak about the proceedings for today’s meeting.