ASTANA – President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev called on Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) member states to make the union’s development trajectory more effective during a May 25 Supreme Eurasian Economic Council meeting in Moscow, reported the Akorda press service.
The talks began with a narrow format meeting that included Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan, President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko, President of the Kyrgyz Republic Sadyr Japarov, President of Russia and the council’s chairman Vladimir Putin, and Chairman of the Eurasian Economic Commission Mikhail Myasnikovich.
The meeting in the expanded format was joined by President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev, President of Tajikistan Emomali Rahmon, President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev as the head of an EAEU observer state, Executive Secretary of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) Sergei Lebedev, and Secretary-General of Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Zhang Ming.
During the meeting, the leaders discussed the union’s work and development.
Addressing the economic development within the union, Tokayev said cooperation within the EAEU shows a positive trend despite the global crisis. Kazakhstan’s trade turnover with other member countries has grown by 74%, while exports have increased by 98% over the years of the EAEU activity.
According to the Kazakh President, in the current geo-economic conditions, the union should reach its full potential more efficiently by forming a single, barrier-free market, providing unhindered transit of goods to third countries.
Tokayev called meeting participants to strengthen economic and trade interaction with the SCO, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the Southern Common Market (Mercosur) in Latin America, and other international and regional alliances. He said it is crucial to promptly finalize free trade zone agreements with Egypt, India, Indonesia, Israel and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
The President focused on industry development, saying Kazakhstan is “ready to act as a center for the development of Eurasian industrial cooperation.”
He offered to promote joint ventures for producing electric vehicles, mainline locomotives, railcars, agricultural and passenger vehicles, building materials and chemical products. Kazakhstan is also ready to implement joint projects to develop ferrous and non-ferrous metal deposits with the processing and production of finished products.
To enhance integration development, Tokayev suggested creating new international transport arteries and considering the possibility of joint investments in infrastructure in the sea and dry ports of Iran and Turkmenistan.
Tokayev suggested holding the EAEU’s 10th anniversary summit in Astana next year, mentioning that the EAEU Treaty was signed in the Kazakh capital.