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Supreme Eurasian Economic Council adopting new structure of Eurasian Economic Commission

Supreme Eurasian Economic Council adopting new structure of Eurasian Economic Commission

10/16/2015

On October 16, a session of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council took place, which was attended by President of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan, President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko, President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev, President of Kyrgyzstan Almazbek Atambayev and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

During the talks, the countries of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) discussed the most topical problems and prospects of the Union's development.

The heads of states discussed a number of issues related to the functioning of the Eurasian Economic Commission in the next cycle. In particular, it was decided that the new composition of the Commission Board will include 2 representatives from each country. Thus, there will be 10 Board Members - Ministers, including the Chair. According to the decision of the Supreme Council, Tigran Sarkisian will be the next Chairman of the EEC Board. Currently, he is the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Armenia to the United States. Earlier, Tigran Sarkisian occupied the post of Prime Minister of Armenia. According to the Chairman of the EEC Board, Viktor Khristenko, Sarkisian is "the man who devoted much time to Eurasian integration, he was the key engine of Armenia's joining the EAEU." Tigran Sarkisian will head the work of the Commission since February 1 next year.

The Heads of States discussed cooperation of the Union countries in pairing the Eurasian Economic Union with the Silk Road Economic Belt (SREB). China has been and remains one of the key economic partners of the EAEU countries. At the end of 2014 trade turnover between the Union and China amounted to about 110 billion US dollars.

In 2013, China initiated the establishment of the New Silk Road Economic Belt, a global project to harmonize trade and economic cooperation among the countries participating in the project, to encourage infrastructure investments.

In view of China's initiatives and objectives of expanding economic and trade cooperation with China in May this year Supreme Eurasian Economic Council decided to start negotiations on agreement on trade and economic cooperation between China and the EAEU. Preparatory work is already under way. Formal negotiations are to commence in early 2016. This is not a preferential agreement yet, but an important stage in the development of economic cooperation, which orders the entire structure of relations and provides the basis for further progress.

The agreement is intended to become the main instrument of economic cooperation between the Union and China in the medium term, to form the economic dimensions of pairing EAEU and SREB in practice.

To coordinate cooperation between the countries of the Union on issues of pairing the EAEU and the Silk Road Economic Belt, the heads of the EAEU states adopted the relevant decision.

As a result of the meeting the sides signed a number of documents defining the interaction procedure of the Eurasian Economic Union and the Eurasian Economic Commission with third countries. In particular, the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council approved the Main Directions of the EAEU international activity for the years 2015-2016 and Approaches to the development of trade and economic cooperation with key EAEU partners in the medium term.

During the session it was decided to start negotiations with the State of Israel to establish a free trade zone. The proposal was adopted on the basis of the report by the joint study group.

The Chairman of the EEC Board noted that in connection with the accession of Kazakhstan to the WTO Heads of State adopted a package of documents to ensure implementation of these decisions in the rules of the Union. As Viktor Khristenko stressed: "On the one hand, they allow extending the commitments made by Kazakhstan at the accession to the WTO, to the market of Kazakhstan. On the other hand, they allow building a system of administration in such a manner that the difference in rates does not cause any harm to other countries of the Union." Decisions of the Council will enter into force once ratification procedures in parliaments of EAEU countries are completed. This process in national parliaments should be entirely over by December 15, 2015. 

The Main directions of Union's economic development up until 2030 were approved in order to coordinate national policies and the development of integration measures to improve the competitiveness of the Member States' economies. 
"With all the turbulence and uncertainty that exists today in the world economy, the document fixing the basic directions of economic policy coordination seems very important and timely. In fact, this document captures a possibility of building national economic policies at the joint site, in the first place, to provide interaction, reconciliation of positions on monetary policy, macroeconomic policy, policy on the financial markets in order to better ensure predictability and stability in our countries' development," said Viktor Khristenko.

The Union's Heads of States approved the list of services sectors, in which a formation of a single market for services within the EAEU will be carried out in accordance with the plans of liberalization. According to the Decision by the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council, the governments of the Union, together with EEC are entrusted to prepare until April 1, 2016 plans for the liberalization with specific time frames (transition period) to create single market of services in sectors (sub-sectors) specified in the list. EEC is instructed to submit these plans by July 1, 2016 for consideration by the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council. EEC Council was instructed to establish working groups in sectors (sub-sectors) of services specified in the list in pursuance to implement this decision.

The Heads of States also made a decision to amend the Decision by the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council (SEEC) No. 112 dated December 23, 2014 "On approving the individual national lists of restrictions, exemptions, additional requirements, and conditions within the Eurasian Economic Union for the Republic of Armenia, Republic of Belarus, Republic of Kazakhstan, and the Russian Federation." Amendments are required in connection with the formation of the individual national list of restrictions, exemptions, additional requirements, and conditions for Kyrgyzstan within the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU). They were developed with the aim of implementing the Treaty on the accession of the Kyrgyz Republic to the integration project.

At a session of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council a decision was adopted, according to which the Kyrgyz Republic is to affiliate itself to 43 sectors of the single services market of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU).

Parties also adopted the Regulation on External Audit (Control) in Bodies of the Eurasian Economic Union;

In addition, the SEEC session adopted an Order of admission of new members and termination of membership in the Union.