Meeting of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council

Friday, 27 July 2018 12:04

Remarks by Dmitry Medvedev at the meeting of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council:

I want to welcome all of you to St Petersburg to this meeting of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council. The prime ministers of Armenia and Kyrgyzstan – Nikol Pashinyan and Muhammadkaliy Abylgaziev – are participating in this format for the first time. We have already discussed many important matters with you today.

This is our second meeting under Russia’s presidency in the EAEU. Before that, we met in Almaty on February 2. We see our goals as fully implementing all the agreements that have been reached by our union both at the level of heads of state and at the level of heads of government, and setting new goals.

The group of five Eurasian states is working successfully and is gradually revealing its capabilities. In the first quarter of 2018, internal trade in the countries of the union and their foreign trade continued to grow (by 16.4 percent and almost 24 percent, respectively). Moreover, the participating states have increased their supplies to the union’s common market of not only raw materials, but also machinery, equipment, metals, metal products, chemical products, food and agricultural supplies.

All this suggests that intra-union trade flows are becoming more balanced, and the manufacturing industry and agriculture of our countries are getting new opportunities for expanding production and creating new jobs.

We plan to consistently work to achieve the goals set by our heads of state, which are to ensure economic growth rates of at least 2 percent and maintain low inflation. This is enshrined in the Basic Guidelines for Macroeconomic Policy of the EAEU Member States for 2018-2019.

Developing and implementing digital technology is one of the key areas of our cooperation. We are all aware of its importance for building the economy of the future. Coordinated efforts to digitize the economic space are among the Russian presidency’s priorities.

The EAEU now has a regulatory framework for launching the first digital projects in priority areas. For our part, we came up with a number of initiatives in the sphere of e-commerce, goods tracking technology and creating transport corridors and industrial cooperation. We have just discussed all this at our restricted-format meeting. I consider it important that these projects represent not only states, but businesses as well. This is the only way for these projects to stay alive.

We continue to pay special attention to improving supranational regulations. We also discussed in a fairly detailed manner creating, in our union, common markets for oil and oil products, and the natural gas market.

We must ensure a non-discriminatory and transparent environment for doing business. In general, we will need to do an additional work to remove barriers that stand in the way of creating common EAEU markets. We agreed on this during our restricted-format meeting as well. We formed an expert group to eliminate barriers, which includes representatives of the business communities of our countries. Their experience and professionalism will be put to good use here.

Overall, we are making good progress in these areas. The Agreement on Marking Goods with Means of Identification was signed earlier this year. I look forward to the completion of all necessary procedures by the participating states, so that the document may come into force as soon as this year. As you may be aware, we plan to create, by the end of this year, a full-cycle system in Russia from customs clearing the goods to retail outlets selling them. I suggest extending this mechanism to the entire union as soon as possible. The benefits are clear and include establishing effective state control, protecting consumers, and creating a favourable environment for doing business.

Colleagues, finding the appropriate response to all manner of trade restrictions imposed by our foreign partners remains high on the list of our priorities.

Of course, matters that affect the security sphere are in the national area of responsibility. We exercise our right to protect our economic security. The national authority to use retaliatory restrictive measures is enshrined in international law and the WTO rules. All EAEU members have it.

Nevertheless, it is important to map out collective steps if we ever have to uphold our common trade and economic interests. This can not be ruled out, as the latest developments clearly show, including all sorts of ongoing disputes in different regions with the participation of various countries and unions of countries.

With this in mind, I would like to point out that we remain open to cooperation. We want our economic relations with our foreign partners to be built on the well-known win-win principle, which is beneficial for all the participants.

In this context, concluding the EAEU-Iran interim free trade agreement and the EAEU-China agreement on trade and economic cooperation in May were important events. The negotiation process was long and difficult. Our constructive efforts have led us to mutually acceptable agreements. Now, the participating states must promptly carry out the procedures that are necessary to bring these decisions into force.

It is also worth noting that, by decision of the Supreme Eurasian Council, the provision on EAEU observer state status was approved. This status was granted to Moldova.

We sincerely welcome the willingness to expand mutually beneficial cooperation with the countries of our union. The Moldovan representative can now come and start a dialogue with the Eurasian Economic Commission.

Documents signed following the meeting of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council:

  • Instruction on progress in implementing the digital agenda of the Eurasian Economic Union;
  • Instruction on progress in executing Instruction No. 2 of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council of 2 February 2018;
  • Instruction on executing Instruction No. 4 of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council of 2 February 2018;
  • Instruction on progress in implementing Instruction No. 3 of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council of 2 February 2018;
  • Instruction on access for exporters from the Eurasian Economic Union member states to services provided by Russia’s seaport infrastructure;
  • Instruction on cancelling Resolution No. 90 of the Board of the Eurasian Economic Commission of 29 May, 2018 on using anti-dumping measures by imposing an anti-dumping duty on herbicides originating in the European Union and imported into the customs area of the Eurasian Economic Union;
  • Directive on the progress of work on the draft protocol to amend the Treaty on the Eurasian Economic Union of 29 May 2014;
  • Instruction on the draft resolution of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council on forming the common gas market of the Eurasian Economic Union;
  • Directive on the progress of work to create a body to investigate flight accidents and major incidents;
  • Instruction on using collective measures to protect economic interests of the EAEU member states in the wake of unilateral protectionist measures against member states introduced by foreign states;
  • Instruction on amending the Treaty on the Eurasian Economic Union of 29 May 2014;
  • Directive on the annual report by the Eurasian Economic Commission on monitoring the assessment of the regulatory impact of the Eurasian Economic Commission’s draft resolutions in 2017;
  • Directive on crediting and distributing import customs duties among the budgets of the Eurasian Economic Union member states in 2017;
  • Directive on forming a high-level working group on integration issues in cooperation and import substitution in priority industries;
  • Directive on submitting to the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council names of candidates to the Council and the Board of the Eurasian Economic Commission;
  • Directive on the time and place of the next meeting of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council.

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