MINSK, 19 May (BelTA) – Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko has met with Chairman of the Board of the Eurasian Economic Commission Mikhail Myasnikovich, BelTA has learned.
“We had a very detailed conversation and I have delivered a report covering many aspects of Eurasian economic integration. I am very grateful to Mr Lukashenko for interesting and, I would say, bold proposals to deepen integration,” Mikhail Myasnikovich told reporters after the meeting.
According to him, the Belarusian head of state went beyond the issues stipulated by the draft agenda of the upcoming EAEU summit and the first Eurasian Economic Forum in Bishkek. These events will be held in an online format.
“Much attention was paid to the EAEU's long-term prospects. The current EAEU development strategy was approved by the heads of state in December 2020 and will be in effect until 2025. But what about the period after 2025… In this regard, there are issues related to joint investment projects, establishment of joint trans-Eurasian companies. First of all, it is about Russia-Belarus companies that will feel quite confident in the domestic market and produce those goods that are in demand on global markets. And here Mr Lukashenko put forward very interesting and constructive recommendations regarding development institutions. This is not only the Eurasian Development Bank, the Eurasian Fund for Stabilization and Development,” Mikhail Myasnikovich said.
“And, of course, internal resources. Now, some countries are acting in an unfriendly way, but this is precisely the time when it is necessary to invest very seriously in new projects. First of all, import substitution projects. I will study these issues very thoroughly. Of course, the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council will have a very serious discussion about it,” the chairman of the Board of the Eurasian Economic Commission said.
The distribution of import duties was also discussed in detail. “In accordance with the Treaty on the Eurasian Economic Union of 2014, duties are collected in national currencies. Then they are split, transferred to the national bank that converts them into dollars and these dollars are forwarded to the treasuries of other countries,” Mikhail Myasnikovich explained.
“Now a temporary agreement is in effect. It provides that Belarus and Russia use the Russian ruble, while Armenia, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan use the old scheme of foreign exchange settlements among themselves and the Russian ruble in settlements with us. In this regard, it [the upcoming EAEU summit] will consider a very interesting issue, i.e. the introduction of amendments to the Treaty on the Eurasian Economic Union that will update the model and scheme of making settlements,” said the Chairman of the Board of the Eurasian Economic Commission.
According to him, Aleksandr Lukashenko gave his take on this matter. “And in the remaining time, it will be necessary to fine-tune some documents which drafts are submitted for consideration to the heads of state,” Mikhail Myasnikovich added.