The Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan took part in Supreme Eurasian Economic Council’s regular meeting, which was held via videoconferencing.
The RF President Vladimir Putin, Honorary Chairman of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council Nursultan Nazarbayev, Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko, Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, Acting President of Kyrgyzstan Talant Mamytov and Eurasian Economic Commission Board Chairman Mikhail Myasnikovich attended the meeting.
President of Moldova Igor Dodon was in attendance as the Head of an EAEU observer state. President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev and President of Cuba Miguel Diaz-Canel Bermudez also took part in the meeting as heads of candidate states for obtaining observer status within the EAEU.
Prime Minister Pashinyan delivered a speech, in which he stated:
Dear Heads of State,
Dear meeting participants,
I am pleased with today’s meeting, and I would like to warmly greet Honorary Chairman of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council Nursultan Abishevich Nazarbayev. This is the last meeting of the Supreme Council in 2020. In this connection, I would like to start my speech with words of gratitude for the Belarusian chairmanship in the EAEU. In the current force majeure situation, the chairmanship of Minsk was productive and useful with the member states’ support and the fruitful work of the Commission,.
The pandemic and other challenges we have been facing this year created major problems. In the meantime, it failed to narrow the Union’s reach. On the contrary, the hardships resulted in consolidation. Moreover, they highlighted the need to bring to completion the process of building a well-functioning integration union to ensure the free movement of goods, services, labor and capital. The Union should provide conditions conducive to full convergence of our economies and increased level of integration. This imperative was confirmed during the crisis which was eased with the support we have received from our partners. We are grateful for the invaluable assistance provided by the Russian Federation in countering the spread of COVID-19 and in countering the challenges we faced this year.
Concerning the steps to overcome today’s challenges, we cannot avoid mentioning the fact that geographical remoteness and the absence of a common border with member nations give rise to certain difficulties and economic costs for Armenia. As a consequence, unimpeded freight and passenger traffic with the rest of the Union are of fundamental importance to us. Restrictions in this area are especially sensitive, and therefore, the creation of conditions for the abolition of the bans on the entry of Armenian citizens into a number of EAEU countries is of current importance today.
In the context of achieving economic stability in the current environment, I would like to highlight Armenia’s initiative aimed at enabling “green corridors” in order to simplify the applicable customs procedures. We should apply such measures as may help us build on our countries’ foreign economic relations both within the Union and with third countries and their unions.
Today’s meeting takes on special significance, given that the Republic of Cuba and the Republic of Uzbekistan will be officially granted an observer status within the Eurasian Economic Union. In this regard, I would like to welcome President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Miromonovich Mirziyoyev and President of Cuba Miguel Diaz-Canel Bermudez. We reaffirm our commitment and willingness to cooperate.
In the near future we hope to see the observer states involved in the implementation of joint programs, which in turn may promote the growth of mutual trade and economic cooperation. This will help increase our countries’ investment appeal.
We believe that the EAEU’s interaction on the external contour should be built up with new mutually beneficial projects that could imply enhanced cooperation with a particular country. In this vein, we consider adopting a decision to continue work on the interim agreement signed with Iran in 2018.
Armenia committed to consistently promoting EAEU’s economic interests on the global market and strengthening the EAEU positioning as a reliable, predictable partner in the international arena.
We are confident that as adopted today, the documents referred to as “On EAEU International Activity’s Main Directions for 2021” and “On Medium-Term Approaches to the Development of Trade and Economic Cooperation with the Union’s Main Partners” will go a long way towards these goals.
Armenia considers it a priority to finalize “The Strategic Directions for the Development of Eurasian Integration until 2025.” We must find compromise solutions to complete this extremely important process for our integration association.
We adhere to the principled position on the need for a coordinated energy policy. In particular, we are confident that the formation of a common gas market for the Union is an integral part of economic integration within the Union.
The Republic of Armenia expresses its satisfaction with the work done by the Commission and the authorized bodies of the Member States in the past period as part of the first stage of the formation of the common gas market within the EAEU. We would like to highlight the second stage, which should be set the primary task of creating infrastructural, technological and legal bases for the formation of a common gas market of the Union. In this regard, we once again voice confidence that the development and adoption of an international treaty on the EAEU common gas market will come as an important milestone on the way to developing the integration space.
At the Intergovernmental Council’s meeting held a week ago, the issue of granting tariff preferences for goods originating and imported into the Union’s customs territory from developing and least developed countries was considered.
We believe that the implementation of the agreements reached within the framework of the Intergovernmental Union on the elaboration of the issue will make it possible to bring the list of countries using the EAEU unified system of tariff preferences under the criteria adopted within the EAEU. This will also eliminate the need for elaboration of the issue at the level of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council and the EAEU Court.
In view of the fact that the Republic of Kazakhstan is to assume the EAEU chairmanship in 2021, I would like to wish our Kazakh friends every success and reaffirm Armenia’s readiness to interact with the presiding side and all member states with a view to promoting the development of our Union. Thank you”.
More than two dozen issues bearing on the furtherance and development of EAEU integration processes were discussed during the meeting. It was decided to grant Uzbekistan and Cuba an observer status within the EAEU.
A broad range of issues related to Eurasian integration were discussed: trade, activities in the domestic market, competition, industry, technical regulations, etc. During their extended session, the leaders of EAEU-member states signed the minutes of the meeting and documents on the decisions made.