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Belarus, Russia continue to sort out things on sidelines of EEU because of gas

Contradictions between Belarus and Russia are not settled. Countries continue to sort things out on the sidelines of the Eurasian Economic Union. Today, the two countries' premiers again exchanged courtesies during a meeting of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council in Bishkek.

The painful topic was raised by the head of the Cabinet of Ministers of Belarus Andrey Kobyakov. He noted that Belarus is ready to move forward, but is against pretending that this is happening.

     

A lot has been done for the first two years in the EEU. But progress is still far.

Andrey Kobyakov

“The decision on non-participation of our country in December meeting of the presidents wasn’t spontaneous. There are serious reasons for this. “We are forced to emphasize that today the bilateral legal and regulatory framework, which was created not in isolation but in close relationship with the multilateral agreements of the EEU, is not being implemented. Moreover, problems in bilateral relations fundamentally affect our participation in multilateral integration processes. Problems in bilateral relations distort Eurasian integration,” Andrey Kobyakov said.

The response from the head of the Russian government Dmitry Medvedev came quickly. He noted that last year the Prime Ministers worked hard.

“I want to say that we worked quite efficiently because we were able to advance on a number of important issues, including the preparation of the Customs Code and a number of important decisions in the field of foreign trade, the formation of common markets,” the Russian Prime Minister began friendly.

He noted that it is the single supranational regulation in relation to markets that gives countries the opportunity to derive maximum benefit from the integration for the development of economies. But then Dmitry Medvedev talked about sore points.

I would like to note an extremely unpleasant trend. Cases have become more frequent when the problems of bilateral relations, and such problems have been, are and will be, there is nothing dramatic in them, are transferred to our multilateral platform.

Dmitry Medvedev

“This has just been successfully demonstrated by the Belarusian side. The fulfillment of the agreements reached by us and the integration process as a whole become hostages to specific understandings of national interests. In fact, with respect to other members of the union who are not involved in the dispute, there is an absolutely unacceptable situation. I consider that the abuse of the right of union is unacceptable,” Dmitry Medvedev said.

The dispute between the two countries arose because of the price of the gas. Belarus claims that for it the natural gas from the Russian Federation has risen in price two-fold in three years. This negatively affected the country's power system, which is completely dependent on Russian gas. Dmitry Medvedev replied that Belarus would have European prices for gas, if it hasn’t been a part of the EEU.

Nobody forces to stay in the union.

Dmitry Medvedev

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