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Opinions & Interviews

17 Nov 2017

Full-value relations with European Union named vital for stability in Belarus

Full-value relations with European Union named vital for stability in Belarus

MINSK, 17 November (BelTA) – Full-value and mutually beneficial relations with the European Union are the necessary prerequisite for stronger statehood, security, and stability in Belarus. Belarusian Minister of Foreign Affairs Vladimir Makei made the relevant statement during the Minsk Forum on 17 November, BelTA has learned.

The official said: “We are very close — at least the Belarusian side believes we are — to the legal formalization of our relations. The lack of an up-to-date agreement between us is the last remnant of the sanction period. I don’t think our European partners feel comfortable about the fact that by default we are still connected by the agreement signed by the USSR and the European Economic Community. It is high time we put an end to this legal and political oddity.”

The Belarusian minister of foreign affairs explained that the new legal agreement with the European Union is needed taking into account changes in the context. The document will allow the sides to more actively advance trade and economic cooperation, political and humanitarian relations. It will help bring closer standards in various spheres.

“These days we feel certain problems with selling Belarusian products on the European market. Nobody knows what will happen 10-15 years down the road. The situation may be different for Belarus then. But we have found our place in the Eurasian Economic Union and believe that this is our future. Today we feel tangible dividends from it,” noted Vladimir Makei.

The minister of foreign affairs reminded that three other Eastern Partnership Initiative countries had decided to go for tighter relations with the European Union and had signed association agreements. “But the European Union should not brush aside the other countries participating in this initiative. This is why if we want to abide by common values, if we want to rely on common ideas, we should work to secure rapprochement instead of estrangement. The European Union should also think about cooperation with the other three countries, which have not yet stated their intention to join the European Union or sign an association agreement,” Vladimir Makei was convinced.

 

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