SOCHI, 6 December (BelTA) – Prime Minister of Belarus Sergei Rumas met with his Russian counterpart Dmitry Medvedev on 6 December and suggested discussing unresolved issues concerning integration within the framework of the Union State of Belarus and Russia, BelTA has learned.
Sergei Rumas said: “I am glad we've met again and have an opportunity to discuss the matters our ministers have failed to agree on.”
Sergei Rumas noted he had familiarized himself with Dmitry Medvedev's yesterday interview and agreed that it is necessary to appreciate and preserve accomplishments of the Union State. “I share the premise. Belarusians believe that over the course of 20 years our Union State has evolved into a very powerful integration association. In addition to ‘appreciating integration' I would also add ‘develop',” Sergei Rumas pointed out.
Dmitry Medvedev reminded these negotiations were taking place on the eve of the meeting of the presidents of Belarus and Russia, in which representatives of the governments will take part one way or another. In his words, today the sides will have to discuss what solutions have been prepared, what roadmaps have been agreed and which ones have not.
“Just recently you and I spent nearly eight hours in discussions. It seems to me we did rather well. As we agreed, this is the final meeting to discuss these matters at the governmental level ahead of the presidential meeting. We can once again take a look at the roadmaps and the matters that have not been reconciled,” Dmitry Medvedev suggested.
The Russian head of government believes it is only natural that some integration issues have not been resolved yet. “The number of areas relating to integration is colossal. It would be strange of us to try to come to terms on all things within such a short period of time. The work the two governments, the ministers of economy, the deputy prime ministers, and we have done was very fast after all, yet sufficiently profound. But it doesn't mean we undertake to make all the decisions. We couldn't do it if we tried. This is why we had to request a meeting of the presidents. I hope tomorrow's work will clarify a lot,” Dmitry Medvedev added.
After the one-on-one meeting members of the government delegations were invited to join in the negotiations. The Belarusian side is represented by First Deputy Prime Minister of Belarus Dmitry Krutoi, Deputy Prime Minister Igor Lyashenko, Finance Minister Maksim Yermolovich, Energy Minister Viktor Karankevich, Chairman of the state petrochemical concern Belneftekhim Andrei Rybakov, and other officials.
BelTA quoted Sergei Rumas as saying earlier on 6 December that Belarus and Russia have only 16 items in the integration roadmaps left to reconcile.