Eurasian Economic Union Should Ensure Integration Benefits, Says Kazakh PM

ASTANA — Kazakh Prime Minister Alikhan Smailov emphasized that it is crucial that individuals and businesses within the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) firsthand experience the benefits of integration. His comments were made during the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council meeting held in Armenia on Aug. 24, reported the Prime Minister’s press service.

Smailov economic cooperation remains the backbone of the EAEU. Photo credit: Prime Minister’s press service.

The meeting, attended by Kyrgyz Prime Minister Akylbek Japarov, Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin, Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, and Belarusian Prime Minister Roman Golovchenko, centered on advancing integration processes within the EAEU.

Smailov mentioned that Kazakhstan’s President, Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, had earlier called for a comprehensive analysis of the EAEU’s statutes at a meeting of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council in May. 

“It will outline the accomplishments of the union, as well as specific recommendations for further integration. The Commission has already begun preparing the report. We hope that it will be detailed and objective, with specific reasons for shortcomings in implementing certain agreements,” said Smailov.

Participants of the meeting of the Intergovernmental Council of the EAEU in the Armenian Tsakhkadzor, Aug. 24. Photo credit: Prime Minister’s press service.

The Prime Minister noted that in almost a decade since the establishment of the EAEU, the countries have developed a legal framework, harmonized foreign trade regulations, and created seamless domestic commerce.

“Relations between our countries on various issues are dynamically developing in the spirit of mutual respect and support, with economic cooperation serving as the cornerstone,” he said. 

Smailov highlighted that while planning new integration milestones, it is important to consider the current situation.

“EAEU is going through a maturation stage. We consider it necessary not to get involved in integrating new areas, as this could lead to an unstable structure. The upcoming report will help us assess the current state of the union, work on the mistakes, and define the contours of the future development of economic integration,” he said.

According to Smailov, Kazakhstan believes the Eurasian economic project should be based on economic pragmatism. In this regard, the country has prepared its own draft Declaration, outlining the further development of the EAEU.

He said Kazakhstan is interested in strengthening industry and the agro-industrial complex through cooperative projects, enhancing transport and logistics cooperation, and creating a common financial market. The country also sees the development of the Eurasian Economic Commission and the institution of observer states as crucial, along with cooperation with other interested nations.

In conclusion, Smailov stated that a stable foundation is needed for achieving significant economic progress.

“Kazakhstan is committed to actively exploring new growth avenues, strengthening our relations and addressing common economic challenges. I am sure that through joint efforts, we can elevate the EAEU to a higher level of quality development,” Smailov concluded.

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