Excerpts from the transcript of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council meeting in an expanded format
President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Colleagues,
Let me once again greet you at this expanded meeting. We have just briefly exchanged opinions on how we will organise our work today. I would like to give the floor to the Prime Minister of Armenia, who will announce the decisions we have already taken, and then we can proceed to signing the documents we agreed on earlier.
You have the floor.
Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan: Thank you, Mr Putin.
We have reached a consensus on all the issues on the agenda, and all decisions have been made. We agreed on the Eurasian Economic Union's board members, and I would like to congratulate Mr Myasnikovich in this regard and give the floor to Tigran Sargsyan to announce today's agenda. Then we will proceed to the signing ceremony.
Vladimir Putin: We know Mr Myasnikovich very well; we previously worked with him for a long time, including during his term as the Prime Minister of Belarus. No issues here, I just have a request.
As I said when opening our restricted format meeting today, we have to upgrade and approve a strategy for our association's development. Of course, we would very much like the new chairman of the commission to inform each of us on his idea of his work on coordinating the issues that have yet to be coordinated by the member states at the national level.
I would therefore ask him to visit our capitals and meet with his colleagues, top government officials and specialists who will work together with him to promote this strategy at the national level. I would also ask him to decide on how he will proceed with his work in his new capacity in the near future and then to update us on this.
I believe this work will benefit all of us and make him aware of the issues that require additional coordination so he could inform us and so we would have a better understanding when we make the final decisions on this strategy.
Mikhail Myasnikovich: Thank you very much.
Undoubtedly, I would like to emphasise that most importantly, there is the political will of the states for a full-fledged integration of our countries, and there are basic documents that constitute the law of the Eurasian Economic Union. I see the main task in implementing these documents and the political will shown by the heads of state.
I am perfectly aware that there is going to be a lot of necessary yet routine work as regards the coordination and development of mutually acceptable decisions. But I believe that my knowledge and experience will help me implement this.
Mr Putin, I accept your instruction and will begin working on this as of February 1. If you so wish, I will visit all partners and officials involved in these efforts and we will discuss the strategic issues.
In my opinion, we should make serious progress in matters of creating joint infrastructure projects that constitute the basis, as well as in issues related to technical regulations – that is, everything that should be shared by our countries’ economies, at the same time making sure it complements our national institutions rather than replaces them.
Of course, we will, I believe, need approaches and decisions to launch joint companies, large companies, particularly those operating in the high-tech industry, of higher value-added levels.
Vladimir Putin: Colleagues, friends,
I have an honourable mission and a duty to present Russia’s high state decoration, the Order of Friendship, to Eurasian Economic Commission Board Chairman Tigran Sargsyan.
But first, I would like to note Mr Sarkissian's substantial personal contribution to the Eurasian Economic Union's development. Under his leadership in the past four years, the Eurasian Economic Commission has worked flawlessly and in a coordinated manner to successfully solve the most pressing issues on the integration agenda. Mr Sarkissian has done a lot to make the EAEU a truly efficient economic association and made significant efforts to enhance its international authority and develop partner relations with other states and regional integration associations.
The Order of Friendship also shows our acknowledgement of Mr Sarkissian's special merits in developing friendly and allied relations between Russia and Armenia. Serving in his various official capacities, including his work as Chairman of the Central Bank and Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia, he consistently focused on expanding Russian-Armenian comprehensive cooperation and boosting mutual understanding between our nations.
I would also like to add that while serving in his recent position, which he will be leaving soon, Mr Sarkissian has succeeded in creating a very favourable working atmosphere, a very friendly and professional one. He showed great patience despite rather heated debates when we discussed issues that needed to be coordinated, was very patient, and created all the conditions for us to reach a necessary common denominator.
Mr Sarkissian, I congratulate you and would like to wholeheartedly wish you health, well-being and further success.
Nikol Pashinyan: Thank you, colleagues. Our work has been completed.