Eurasian Union Treaty Signed!


While EU and NATO asks; Energy Security, The Next Great Game?

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Avrasya Ekonomik Birliği resmen kuruldu!

Rusya’yı izole etmeyi başaramadılar

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Agreement on Eurasian Economic Union singed

May 29, 2014 – The Agreement on the Eurasian Economic Union will come into force on the Customs Union territory on January 1, 2015.
Work on the document began back in November 2011 at the first summit meeting of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council, where the presidents of the Russian Federation, Belarus and Kazakhstan adopted a declaration on Eurasian economic integration, which became a sort of ‘roadmap’ for the development of their integration.

Taking part in drafting the final agreement on the Russian side were over 30 federal executive bodies. The document is based on norms of the contractual legal framework of the Customs Union and Common Economic Space, which were optimised, improved and brought into compliance with the rules of the World Trade Organisation.

The three states undertake to guarantee the free movement of goods, services, capital and work force and to implement a coordinated policy in such key branches of the economy as energy, industry, agriculture and transport.

PRESIDENT OF RUSSIA VLADIMIR PUTIN:

Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan are signing the Agreement on the Eurasian Economic Council. This document will take our countries to a completely new integration level, fully retaining their national sovereignty, but providing for closer and better-coordinated economic cooperation.

It is very symbolic that we are signing the Agreement in the capital of Kazakhstan, because Nursultan Nazarbayev stood at the origins of this idea: he was the first to mention it when speaking at Moscow State University, as I remember, in 1994.

Today, we are creating together a powerful and attractive economic development centre, a major regional market uniting over 170 million people.

Our Union has immense natural resources, including energy resources. It accounts for 20 percent of the global natural gas reserves and 15 percent of oil reserves.

At the same time, the three states have a developed industrial base, vast labour resources, and a powerful intellectual and cultural potential.

Our geographic location makes it possible to create transportation and logistics routes of not only regional, but also global significance and attract large-scale trade from Europe and Asia.

All this is the basis for the competitiveness of our union, for its dynamic development in this rapidly changing and complicated world.
I would like to stress that the Eurasian Economic Union will operate based on universal, transparent and clear principles. This includes the norms and principles of the WTO.

The Agreement on the Eurasian Economic Union is ready for signing. I would like to stress that this is the result of our joint efforts, and of close interaction between the governments of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan.
Thanks to our general constructive approach and our ability and readiness to compromise, we managed to overcome a large number of obstacles on our way to have the document ready for signing by June 1, 2014, as we planned.
I would like to thank Mr Nazarbayev for his invitation and for organising this event, which he has actually turned into a real celebration.

I would like to stress that the governments of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan jointly with the Eurasian Economic Commission managed to complete the drafting of the Agreement on the Eurasian Economic Union as was planned – by June 1, 2014.

As you may know, this process was launched in 1994, when Mr Nazarbayev first described this idea speaking at Moscow State University. It was then developed at a variable pace. In 2009, the President of Kazakhstan yet again gave it additional impetus and we agreed to intensify our efforts in this direction.

I am happy to say that there is popular consensus on this idea in Russia. Whoever was President (back then it was Dmitry Medvedev) we always actively supported this and continued the work on it at Government level.
The Agreement we signed is a truly historical milestone that opens up broad prospects for the development of our economies and improving the well-being of our countries’ citizens.

Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan are moving towards a completely new level of cooperation by creating a common space where goods, services, capital and work force can move freely. The three states will follow a coordinated policy in such key branches of the economy as energy, industry, agriculture and transport.

This was not an easy job and until now it was difficult to come to agreement on all these issues. We moved along, even though it was with heated disputes, I would not say with rows, but with serious disagreements. We will continue to move ahead in the same way – based on mutual understanding and a desire to achieve compromise acceptable to all.

We are essentially creating the largest common market on CIS territory (with over 170 million people) with an enormous production, research and technological potential and huge natural resources.

It is not surprising, and I will dwell on it a bit later, that major economies are already showing direct interest in this union. Wherever I go and whomever I meet – everyone wants to know how to establish relations with the new Eurasian Union.

A new economic organisation has appeared on the international arena, one that has full juridical personality and acts based on the principles of the World Trade Organisation. It is important that the transfer of certain authority to supranational agencies of the Union is of no detriment to the sovereignty of our states.

Mutual benefit from integration has already been demonstrated in practice. The economic ties between Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan are expanding, their trade structure is improving, the share of high-tech goods in the overall trade structure is increasing and our countries are becoming ever more economically competitive in the world.

In the past three years trade turnover within the Customs Union has gone up by 50 percent – that is by $23 billion (in 2013 it amounted to $66.2 billion). Belarus and Kazakhstan together come in third in the overall trade balance of the Russian Federation (after the EU and China). However, let us compare: our trade turnover with the EU is 440 billion, and with China it is 87. Belarus and Kazakhstan are much smaller in terms of economic volumes than these two world economic giants are, but they rate third in their trade with Russia. This shows that we have reached this level mainly due to our integration.
With this in view, we have considered in detail with our partners today how we can use the potential of the Eurasian Economic Union to enhance the flow of goods and investment and expand industrial and technological cooperation.

Special attention is given to improving the business climate. Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan intend to stimulate responsible competition on the Union market. At the same time, we will efficiently protect the interests of the consumers and the businesses of the member states.

For the future, we have set ourselves the goal of creating a common financial market. The absence of barriers in the flow of capital will make it possible to diversify risks and improve the quality, accessibility and reliability of financial services.

Stage-by-stage harmonisation of the currency policy will serve to enhance the stability of the financial systems of the Union member states and will make the national money markets more predictable and better protected from exchange rate fluctuations, and will enhance our sovereignty as well.

The citizens of our countries should be able to fully assess the benefits of Eurasian integration. They will receive the right to work freely in the three states without having to obtain any work permits.

Of course, we touched upon the issue of expanding membership in the Eurasian Union, as Mr Nazarbayev already mentioned, and we have considered the draft agreement with Armenia. This document should be approved and signed shortly. Armenia would like to have this done in June. Overall, we all agreed. We expect that shortly after the Union is set up, Armenia will become its full-fledged member.

We also discussed the prospects for other partners joining the Union, primarily Kyrgyzstan. We have just had a detailed discussion with the President of Kyrgyzstan. I believe chances are high, though there is still a lot of work to be done to draft the relevant documents. We are ready to help, and Kyrgyzstan has every chance of joining the Union soon.

We agreed to step up our negotiations, as I already said, with Vietnam on creating a free trade zone, to strengthen cooperation with the People’s Republic of China, specifically in the exchange of customs information on goods and services, and to form expert groups that would work out preferential trade regimes with Israel and India.

I am convinced that through joint efforts we will be able to create favourable conditions for the development of our economies in order to maintain stability, security and prosperity in Eurasia. Source.

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    US policy in Eurasia: Full-Spectrum Subversion

    by Mark HACKARD – What do postmodern exhibitionists, Islamic holy warriors and marauding ultra-nationalists share in common? Seemingly little, aside from the fact that these bizarre bedfellows are the star assets of US policy in Eurasia. And despite their use of very different tactics, they all are tasked with the same mission: to undermine Russia, the only great power consistently opposed to American hegemony. (…)

    What the events of early 2014 show is how quickly “soft power” can transition to the hard variant; subversion makes inroads for aggression. Washington spent two decades and $5 billion to make Ukraine safe for Chevron and Exxon-Mobil, but now it is reaping far more than it anticipated. Moscow has moved decisively to secure its vital interests in the region, leading to Crimea and the key naval base of Sevastopol being reunited with Russia after 60 years of estrangement. And the Russian-oriented south and east of Ukraine are also rising against an illegitimate regime resolved on virtually giving away strategic assets to multinationals – while sending ultra-nationalist militias to enforce the sales[iv]. From the port of Odessa to the Don River Basin, both Russians and Ukrainians share one thousand years of a unified Eastern Slavic civilization, an ideal that endures in blood and spirit; this reality will long outlive predatory IMF “structural adjustments” and the deformed chauvinism on offer from the current junta in Kiev. Full analysis.

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    Ukrainians turned out in historic numbers on Sunday, uniting to express their political will to choose freely their own future. The United States congratulates the people of Ukraine for voting in large numbers to express their clear desire for a united, democratic, and peaceful Ukraine. The election reaffirms Ukraine’s commitment to the democratic process. We look forward to working with President-elect Poroshenko and the people of Ukraine to build on this victory for democracy in order to create a more unified, secure, transparent and prosperous Ukraine.

    We note the importance of the OSCE’s judgment that the election was largely in line with Ukraine’s international commitments and demonstrated respect for fundamental freedoms in the vast majority of the country. Thousands of independent electoral observers, international and domestic, supported this OSCE determination. We thank the OSCE’s Office of Democratic Institutions and Human Rights, the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, European Parliament, and the NATO Parliamentary Assembly, and the other international and non-governmental organizations and observers who contributed to the effort.

    But, as we celebrate the successful May 25th presidential election, we must also condemn the actions of those who sought to derail the voting in parts of eastern Ukraine. In particular, we condemn the actions of pro-Russian armed separatists operating in Donetsk and Luhansk who attacked District Election Commissions and polling stations, and intimidated election workers, notably through abductions, death threats, forced entry into private homes, seizure of equipment and election materials, and the shooting of a candidate proxy. These illegal actions constituted attempts to obstruct the election and to interfere with citizens’ rights to participate.

    Yet even in these two regions of the east where pro-Russian separatist groups sought to disenfranchise the population, some courageous Ukrainians endeavored to vote. The United States commends the resolve of the Ukrainian people to participate despite these threats, provocations, and violence. We take particular note of the Central Election Commission, which established special accommodations to enfranchise voters in the areas where separatists worked to disrupt voting, by allowing citizens to vote at alternate locations and which made voting arrangements for Crimeans to vote outside of Ukraine’s Crimea region, a region which remains under Russian occupation.

    Mr. President, President-elect Poroshenko and the Ukrainian government have many challenges before them. We are heartened by the President elect’s stated goal to make national reconciliation a priority. Forging a common political vision will be essential. In this regard, we welcome the Ukrainian government’s intention to continue the OSCE-supported national unity roundtables, which have allowed Ukrainians from all regions and all political views to come together to discuss their differences and their common interests in a peaceful, unified, and stable Ukraine. And we welcome the Rada’s May 21st Memorandum of Understanding and Peace that calls on all citizens to abandon radical actions and hatred, and to protect, promote and build a democratic, sovereign and united Ukraine.

    We are also encouraged by President-elect Poroshenko’s willingness to seek greater decentralization for the regions, to pursue constitutional reforms following the election, and to engage in dialogue with Russia. As the Russian Federation has stated that it will respect the will expressed by the Ukrainian people, we therefore urge Russia to recognize the results of Sunday’s election and begin to engage constructively with President-elect Poroshenko and the Ukrainian Government to resolve the crisis.

    Despite progress made with Sunday’s election we are deeply concerned by the increased violence in Donetsk and Luhansk. Including the seizure of the Donetsk airport by separatists, and we are disturbed by ongoing reports that separatists continue to carry out criminal actions in parts of eastern Ukraine. We recognize that Ukraine must uphold law and order on Ukrainian territory and we call on the separatists to disarm and end the violence. Of particular concern are reports of the detention of international OSCE monitors after they were stopped at separatist checkpoints in the Donetsk region. We condemn the abductions and call on Russia to use its influence with the separatists to secure the immediate release of the monitors and their unimpeded access throughout Ukraine.

    We also remain concerned by reports that armed groups and weapons continue to cross the border from Russia into Ukraine. We believe Russia can and must act to stem such provocative actions along the Russia-Ukraine border.

    In conclusion, Mr. President, let me reiterate the continued support of my government for the aspirations of the people of Ukraine for a prosperous, sovereign, independent, and united Ukraine, including the Crimea region, with strong ties to both east and west. We remain committed to working with Ukraine and other partners to seek de-escalation and the peaceful resolution of the conflict, and to respect the territorial integrity of Ukraine. Ambassador DiCarlo, U.S. Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN.

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    We just heard three powerful reminders of Europe’s promise – peace and democracy, prosperity and solidarity, a civilised and sovereign life as a nation.
    I want to warmly thank the Prime Ministers of Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine for
    accepting the invitation to come to Aachen – at such a tumultuous time for their region –, and I salute their courage, your courage.


    The situation for your countries is on all our minds. Destabilisation by our common
    neighbour Russia is unacceptable, and all the more regrettable since, at heart, this great country fully belongs to the European civilisation, to European culture. Without Shakespeare or Balzac, there would be no Dostoyevsky as we know him, without Gogol, no Kafka, without Tolstoy, no Thomas Mann.


    For the countries of the European Union, there is no nostalgia of a ‘glorious’ past that will never return, no border ambitions at the expense of neighbours, no cycles of defeat and revenge – all member states have now turned that page and look with confidence to the future. Extracts of the Speech by President Herman Van Rompuy upon receiving the International Charlemagne Prize, Aachen 29 May 2014 – Full text.

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    Ukraine’s Sugar Rush and Europe’s Bitterness

    By Alina Inayeh – KYIV—This weekend’s elections brought a sense of euphoria to Ukraine, as Petro Poroshenko, a pro-European candidate, won the country’s presidency in the first round of voting. Despite the fact that 10 percent of the electorate was not able to vote as polling stations in Donetsk and Lughansk remained closed, 90 percent of Ukrainians were able to cast their ballots (55 percent actually did), rendering the election legitimate and legal. The results of the presidential elections have important implications for Ukraine, as voters expressed a clear choice for Europe, for reforms, and for a united country. They cement the demands Ukrainian society has been making of its political class for the last six months, since the protests in Maidan first erupted. They also lifted the popular mood, and gave the newly elected president the popular enthusiasm and support he will need when pursuing his difficult mandate.

    The president-elect’s task now is not an easy one, and he will have to meet very high expectations. Ukrainian voters, along with many in the Ukrainian government, are looking to him to stabilize the situation in the country’s east, do away with corruption, and move ahead with painful economic reforms.

    To his advantage, he has the support of a population that feels more Ukrainian than ever, and remains united against a common enemy – Russia. Putin’s actions in Ukraine have reinforced the determination of Ukrainian citizens to see their country succeed, and to prevent a repeat of the saga of the Orange Revolution.

    Yet the support of the population will weaken when the reforms start to hit, making it essential that the chocolate magnate-turned-president uses the current sugar rush to push through the toughest measures and tackle the most difficult reforms. President Poroshenko’s tasks will be further complicated by the power Ukrainian oligarchs still hold and the influence they still have over the country’s policies. Serious anti-corruption measures will hurt their interests, and their reactions may modify the pace and the course of reform, risking a repeat of the ill-fated Orange Revolution.

    Ukrainians’ confidence that the country and its new president will succeed rests with association with the European Union; for them this goes beyond any technical provisions contained in specific agreements, representing instead a friendly embrace that will keep them from slipping back to corruption and failure. Yet even as Ukrainians demonstrated, once again, their preference for Europe, Europeans in their own elections proved their fatigue with the European Union and their decreasing interest in a more united Europe. The newly elected European Parliament, with one-third of its seats occupied by extreme right and nationalist parties, is not good news for Ukraine. Europe will be even more preoccupied with itself and show decreased attention to its neighborhood. The EU’s Eastern policy will probably not be able to muster the political punch it needs, and appetite for extensive support to Ukraine, or to other countries in the region, will only decrease. Moreover, many of these parties enjoy good relations with Moscow. Their influence on the EU’s policy toward Russia will not benefit Ukraine’s interests, and the European embrace of Ukraine might become more of a friendly pat on the shoulder.

    Ukraine also relies on and believes in European and U.S. support for its stance against Russia, as this represents the main, if not the only, tool to stop Russia’s interference in the country. This weekend, though, further revealed the weakness of the West’s opposition, as representatives of BP, Total, ENI, Philips, IBM, and Exxon, among others, traveled to Russia to attend the St. Petersburg Economic Forum. Furthermore, some of these companies signed important contracts with Russian enterprises, in defiance of EU- and U.S.-imposed sanctions. The unity and determination of the West to protect the principle of territorial integrity is being slowly eroded by financial interests, and the EU will soon find it impossible to adopt a serious policy toward Russia that would limit the influence of the latter in Europe, even less so in the countries to Europe’s east.

    President Poroshenko will likely find his tasks more difficult than anticipated, and external support weaker than he might have hoped. His only ally is a genuine determination to proceed with internal reforms and to address the problems in the Eastern regions, as only concrete, positive results will convince the population to continue to support him, and help Ukraine’s friends in the West secure the support the country needs to advance. Source.

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    Detentions are sabotaging international efforts to overcome the crisis

    Bern, 28 May, 2014 – Didier Burkhalter, Chairperson-in-Office of the OSCE and Swiss Foreign Minister, said that the detention of monitors of the Special Monitoring Mission cannot be tolerated and was undermining the important work of the Mission which was agreed upon by the 57 participating States of the OSCE on March 21. The detentions were acts of sabotage of international efforts to assist Ukraine in overcoming the crisis, Burkhalter continued.

    He called for the immediate and unconditional release of the monitors belonging to the Donestk team of the Special Monitoring Mission.

    Burkhalter underlined the necessity of securing working conditions for the mandate of the Monitoring Mission to be implemented properly. The Special Monitoring Mission was constantly re-assessing and adjusting its security set-up in a shifting environment, he said. Source.

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    Entretien avec M. Petro POROCHENKO

    Le Président de la République s’est entretenu, en début d’après-midi, avec le Président élu d’Ukraine, M. Petro POROCHENKO.

    Il l’a chaleureusement félicité, au nom du peuple français, pour sa victoire dès le premier tour.

    L’élection de M. POROCHENKO ouvre la voie à une sortie de crise pacifique et politique en Ukraine.

    François HOLLANDE a assuré M. POROCHENKO du soutien de la France, en vue du redressement et du retour à la stabilité de son pays, dans un esprit de dialogue national et d’apaisement.

    Il l’a encouragé à engager les réformes politiques et économiques attendues par le peuple ukrainien.

    Il a invité M. POROCHENKO aux cérémonies de commémoration du débarquement en Normandie le 6 juin 2014. France: Le Président de la République .

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    Europe’s Ukrainian Lifeline

    by George Soros – Meanwhile, just as Europe’s bold experiment in international governance is faltering, Russia is emerging as a dangerous rival to the EU, one that has global geopolitical ambitions and is willing to use force. Putin is exploiting an ethnic national ideology (and support from the Orthodox Church) to bolster his regime. Indeed, speaking on the Russian radio program Direct Line last month, he extolled the genetic virtues of the Russian people. The annexation of Crimea has made him popular at home, and his effort to weaken America’s global dominance, in part by seeking an alliance with China, has resonated favorably in the rest of the world.

    But the Putin regime’s self-interest is at odds with Russia’s strategic interests; Russia would benefit more from closer cooperation with the EU and the United States. And resorting to repression in Russia and Ukraine is directly counterproductive. The Russian economy is weakening, despite the high price of oil, owing to the flight of capital and talent. Using violence in Kyiv’s Maidan has led to the birth of a new Ukraine that is determined not to become part of a new Russian empire.

    The success of the new Ukraine would constitute an (…) Full opinion.

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    Donetsk’teki katliam

    Thomas Gaist ve Barry Grey – 29 Mayıs 2014 – İngilizce’den çeviri/ Bu hafta Donetsk’te yaşanan katliamlar, Ukrayna’da Şubat ayında Batı tarafından düzenlenen darbeyi “demokratik devrim” gibi gösterme çabalarını daha da boşa çıkardı ve Kiev’deki Washington’ın kuklası yönetimin gerici karakterini gözler önüne serdi.

    Bu cinayetler, hem “insan hakları” emperyalizmi gerçekliğinin çarpıcı bir göstergesi hem de daha önce Balkanlar’da, ardından Libya’da ve Suriye’de, şimdi de Ukrayna’da onun ardında saf tutan bütün siyasi güçlere yönelik bir ithamdır.

    Washington’daki Obama yönetimi ile Berlin’deki Merkel hükümeti, yeni seçilmiş devlet başkanı milyarder oligark Petro Poroşenko’yu o ülkenin doğusundaki katliamı yönetirken kutladılar. Obama ve Merkel, ülkeyi istikrara kavuşturmanın ve birleştirmenin aracı olarak gösterdikleri katliamı destekledikleri işaretini verdiler.

    Pazar günkü düzmece ve antidemokratik seçimlerden saatler sonra, Donetsk’teki hedeflere karşı bir hava saldırısı başlatıldı. Kiev yönetiminin savaş uçakları Donetsk Havaalanı’nın çevresindeki ayrılıkçıların mevzilerini bombalarken, en az 50 militan öldürüldü, 31’i yaralandı. Kendini ilan etmiş olan Donetsk Halk Cumhuriyeti adına konuşan Leonid Baranov, ölü sayısının 100’ün üzerine çıkabileceğini açıkladı.

    Salı gecesi, hükümet güçleri, Donetsk havaalanına yönelik saldırının ardından kent merkezinin ele geçirilmesine hazırlanıyorlardı. Havaalanı’na yakın bölgelerden gelen silah ve patlama sesleri duyulurken, siviller toplu halde Donetsk’ten kaçıyorlar.

    Seçimlerin doğudaki askeri saldırıya siyasi bir zemin oluşturmak için düzenlendiği şimdi açıkça görülüyor. Oylama, Svoboda partisindeki ve Sağ Sektör’deki neo-faşist güçler önderliğindeki darbeyle yasadışı şekilde iktidara getirilen bir yönetime meşruiyet kılıfı sağlamak için gerçekleştirilmiştir.

    Gerçekte, seçimler, hükümetin son derece sınırlı bir halk desteğine sahip olduğunu ortaya koydu. Ülkenin doğusundaki Rusça konuşulan sanayi bölgesinde neredeyse tam katılımlı bir boykot gerçekleşirken, güneyde yaygın bir katılmama söz konusuydu. Svoboda’nın ve Sağ Sektör’ün önderleri ise yok denecek kadar az oy aldılar. Tamamı.

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    The Age of Violence

    by Michel Rocard – Simply put, much of the world is mired in conflict, with little hope of escape. In Ukraine, violent clashes between pro-Russian separatists and the police are just the latest development in the country’s deteriorating security situation. Syria remains locked in a brutal civil war. And tensions between Israel and Iran over the latter’s nuclear program – not to mention Israel’s decades-old conflict with Palestine – are exacerbating instability in the Middle East, where ten countries, taken together, have become the world’s largest market for weapons, purchasing more new arms annually than China.

    Given the scale of the world’s ecological challenges, our leaders’ incapacity to cooperate effectively on the environment could not be more problematic. For example, at the current rate, the world’s fish resources will be extinguished in the next half-century. Yet Russia, Ukraine, and China recently opposed the establishment of Protected Marine Areas, which are critical to the survival of numerous species.

    We have only one planet, and we must learn to coexist on it. Yet the overwhelming feeling is one of chaos and degradation. We cannot afford to wait for world leaders to solve our problems any longer. The global public must unite to compel decision-makers to take real action aimed at overcoming obstacles to peace, harmony, and sustainability. Full analysis.

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