MINSK, 20 December (BelTA) - Cooperation of the CIS countries has become closer, more active and effective, Chairman of the CIS Executive Committee – CIS Executive Secretary Sergei Lebedev told reporters, BelTA has learned.
"External pressure, unfortunately, on the CIS countries, primarily on Russia, Belarus, is not weakening but, on the contrary, is increasing. They adopted the ninth sanctions package against Russia and Belarus. We are working to counter this pressure by joint efforts. Amid this increased pressure by the so-called collective West, the CIS states have rallied together, cooperation has become closer, more active and more effective," Sergei Lebedev noted.
According to him, the intra-CIS trade surged by 30%. "Foreign markets have been closed to us, and therefore we have intensified domestic trade. Iit is quite effective and mutually beneficial, which is very important,” Sergei Lebedev noted. “I cannot but mention a whole series of visit exchanges between the CIS countries. These contacts have intensified."
Sergei Lebedev added that 2023 will not be easy for the CIS countries. "We set ambitious goals in terms of cooperation. I very much hope that 2023 will be productive for the CIS," he added.