President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Colleagues, friends,
I would like to sincerely welcome you to St Petersburg. As agreed, we are meeting once again just before New Year, so I hope our work today will be as constructive and festive as our mood is.
This means moving forward thoroughly and quickly, towards the implementation of all our plans.
I will not list all the advantages we have gained from working together in recent years. I would like to once again thank our Honorary Chairman Nursultan Nazarbayev, who initiated this organisation. Mr Nazarbayev, everything is working perfectly well here. We are very happy to welcome you as Chairman in St Petersburg today.
I would like to note that there, of course, still are issues that have to be addressed due to various restrictions and withdrawals. In this sense, let me note that this is characteristic of integrational economic organisations in general. We are gradually working towards lifting these restrictions, as our countries get ready to take new steps.
In the near future we should have our final Development Strategy (in fact, it is almost done) agreed upon. I believe that we will focus on this issue – which is in fact strategic – as well as on the election of the head of our Commission, the executive body of our union. This time, under the rotation plan, it must be headed by a Belarusian. We will also talk about this today and make a decision.
Welcome once again. I wish you a good stay in St Petersburg. I hope we will have a successful meeting today.
Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan: Thank you, Mr Putin.
Colleagues, good afternoon, everyone.
In fact, we have come to the year-end in a good mood. Today, we have a consensus on all the items on our agenda, and we can immediately proceed to signing documents. I think this is a very good sign and a very good atmosphere meaning that we actually have agreed on all the issues, and we can go on to the signing procedure.
I think Mr Sarkissian will announce the items on our agenda to be reviewed during the expanded meeting. Since Armenia’s presidency in the Eurasian Economic Union is about to end, I want to thank all our colleagues for their cooperation. I think our presidency was fairly productive and effective, and I am confident that we will continue our cooperation in this spirit.
You have the floor now.
President of the Republic of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko: Colleagues,
I think I can express the common opinion as chairman and as a country chairing the EAEU…
Nikol Pashinyan: I would like to congratulate you on this occasion, since the presidency is now going to Belarus, and I wish you all the best and every success.
Alexander Lukashenko: Thank you. I think you will join me in thanking Armenia for chairing the EAEU quite effectively. The chairman of the collegium represented Armenia. Since we have worked through all the issues related to the presidency, the chairman of our collegium and its members, we just agreed on everything in the restricted format, I think we can… where is Mr Myasnikovich?
Remark: We will call him.
Alexander Lukashenko: Bring him in so everyone can see him, or later you will say we gave you a pig in a poke … Everyone knows him, though.
We just agreed on the collegium members. Russia will retain the trade block. We will retain technical regulation and transfer the agro-industrial commission to Armenia, and the presidency is now ours. So, all these issues have been resolved, and there is no point discussing them.
The only thing left is our future chairman who will be here soon. Well, maybe he is not to everyone’s liking, but everyone knows him well. He is very experienced. Mr Tokayev has informed me in a letter that he has no objections, and our Honorary Chairman said that he supports the EEC chairman candidacy. To save time, we can go there and introduce him during the signing ceremony.
Chairman of the Board of the Eurasian Economic Commission Tigran Sargsyan: Sounds good.
Alexander Lukashenko: Let us do that then.