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Opinions & Interviews

6 Feb 2015

Belarus prime minister outlines key items on Eurasian Economic Union agenda

Belarus prime minister outlines key items on Eurasian Economic Union agenda

MOSCOW, 6 February (BelTA) – Common energy markets, the sphere of services, the development of export and manufacturing cooperation are among the key items on the Eurasian Economic Union’s agenda in 2015. Prime Minister of Belarus Andrei Kobyakov made the statement at the session of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council in the Gorki residence near Moscow on 6 February, BelTA has learned.

Within the framework of the coordinated industrial policy Andrei Kobyakov mentioned the lack of real movement with regard to coordinated import-substitution measures.

“It is time for us to determine the destiny of the term ‘Eurasian Economic Union product’. All of us are extremely cautious about the initiative for now and Belarus is no exception,” said Andrei Kobyakov. “We may need to answer the question of who the domestic producers are if we are to unite efforts to promote their products, including beyond borders of the Eurasian Economic Union. We believe it is necessary to get down to the development of rules to determine the Eurasian Economic Union origin of products”.

At the session of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council The Prime Minister of Belarus underlined that Eurasian Economic Union member states should keep macroeconomics in mind, too. “The Belarusian side has no prepared recipes to implement a coordinated macroeconomic policy,” he said. “But the latest events in the region and the world on the whole require us to come up with coordinated actions in this matter. I believe that our relevant agencies, including the economy ministries and the national banks, should get involved in the work immediately”. Andrei Kobyakov suggested that the Eurasian Economic Commission should send an analysis of the implementation of arrangements on matters concerning the coordinated industrial policy and the agribusiness policy to the governments of the Eurasian Economic Union member states by late February. The analysis will have to contain concrete conclusions and proposals regarding the main directions of industrial cooperation within the framework of the Union, the existing problems and ways for their systemic resolution.

The Eurasian Economic Commission was also encouraged to send a concept of joint export incentives to the governments of the Union member states by 1 April. According to Andrei Kobyakov, these measures may, among other things, include coordinated measures to support export, to develop joint distribution networks, use commodities and services of the member states within the framework of major investment projects in third countries. The measures may also include the joint participation in expos.

Apart from that, the Prime Minister of Belarus said it was necessary to instruct the Eurasian Economic Commission to present a report on progress on working out concepts for forming the common markets of electricity, natural gas, oil and oil products and the program for step-by-step liberalization of cabotage transportation at the next session of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council.

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