Removal of barriers to trade, freedom of transit and containment of food prices. Alikhan Smailov speaks at Eurasian Intergovernmental Council meeting

The Prime Minister of Kazakhstan Alikhan Smailov took part in the meeting of the enlarged Eurasian Intergovernmental Council on Friday, Aug. 26.

The event was attended by Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers and Head of the Presidential Administration of the Kyrgyz Republic Akylbek Japarov, the Prime Minister of the Russian Federation Mikhail Mishustin, the Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan, the Prime Minister of Belarus Roman Golovchenko, as well as high representatives of observers and invited countries, such as the Prime Minister of Uzbekistan Abdulla Aripov, and the Prime Minister of Azerbaijan Ali Hidayat oghlu Asadov.

Alikhan Smailov noted that as a result of the measures taken by the governments of the EEU countries, there has been a recovery of the main economic indicators and partially mitigated economic risks.

"In particular, measures to stabilize and ensure economic growth have increased medium-term growth forecasts for the economies of the EEU countries. In the first half of the year we have seen an increase in mutual trade. Trade turnover between Kazakhstan and the EEU countries increased by 4.8%, amounting to $ 12.6 billion," the Prime Minister said.

At the same time, the Head of Government stressed that for further development it is necessary to focus on solving a number of key issues.

So, according to Alihan Smailov, building a barrier-free environment is the basis of relations between the EEU countries, directly prescribed by the Treaty on its creation. The leading role in this should be played by the Commission, which has all the necessary powers.

"In the current circumstances it is important to determine the mechanisms for leveling the consequences of restrictions that countries are forced to introduce unilaterally," the Prime Minister said.

The Head of Government added that when imposing restrictions on mutual trade, conditions must be created to maintain a certain level of supply of other states with goods of the EEU, as well as to facilitate deliveries from third countries.

Prime Minister also said that currently the countries of the Union are faced with a serious increase in prices, especially for food products. Thus, over 6 months prices in the EEC increased by 12.9% on average.

"At the same time we see serious distortions in the exchange rates between our national currencies, which are determined through cross-rates against the dollar. This has a tangible impact on trade and on inflationary processes in our countries," Alikhan Smailov said.

In this regard, the Prime Minister proposed to hold appropriate consultations of central banks of the EEU countries and make proposals for the next meeting of the Intergovernmental Council.

In addition, the head of government drew attention to the need to ensure freedom of transit of goods for the development of exports of the EEU countries. An important practical step in this direction could be the modernization of infrastructure of Eurasian transport corridors in the East-West and North-South directions.

"Solving the above-mentioned issues, in our opinion, will help us to overcome more successfully the difficulties we have recently encountered. I am confident that through joint efforts we will find answers to the challenges we face, and ensure the sustainable development of our economies, as well as improve the well-being of our citizens," Alikhan Smailov concluded.

At the end of the meeting, the participants signed a number of multilateral documents.

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