The main vector is soldering the integration

Dec 20. Kazpravda. Moscow

By Vladimir Kuryatov

The main vector is soldering the integrationIn Russia yesterday, President Nursultan Nazarbayev shared in the meetings of the CSTO, EurAsEC Interstate Council and the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council.

Impressive potential

Apart from the leaders of the troika -Kazakhstan, Russia and Belarus- members of the mentioned structures- the president of Armenia, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan arrived in Moscow as well.

In the security area the state leaders talked over the issues of the international situation in the CSTO (Collective Security Treaty Organization) responsibility zone and further evolution of the structure, the situation in Central Asia that is constantly changing and is not getting any quieter, necessitating joint plans to curb drug trafficking, improve the collective rapid reaction forces of CSTO and develop common air defense system, – as Nursultan Nazarbayev pointed.

A big challenge to security is the situation in Afghanistan. It is all the more disquieting that according to the CSTO special services; there are militants’ training camps on the IRA territory that train natives of CSTO states, who are on the ready for battling, as evidenced during the acute political crisis in Kyrgyzstan in 2010. Tajikistan is facing this challenge too. With the peacekeeping forces pulling out of Afghanistan, this country remains a major hazard to stability in the region.

Therefore the heads of state endorsed a package of measures to minimize the threats going from that country.

Another important issue raised by President Nursultan Nazarbayev and approved by the meeting was establishment within the CSTO of the system for collective response to emergency situations.

– It is proper, without waiting for emergencies to create special groups, train them, equip with special machinery, so that, if need be, our countries could come to each other’s rescue, – the Kazakh President proponed. For it Kazakhstan provides a training ground for the emergency rescuers- “Rock city of Astana.”

N.Nazarbayev also pointed to the need for further coordination within the UN and other international organizations, harmonization of positions on the key issues of international relations. CSTO is set for a constructive interaction with multilateral security institutions, such as the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, NATO, OSCE, CICA, operating in the responsibility zone.

– We are facing multiple challenges that must be addressed in the shortest possible term, particularly those on which we have agreed.

The upshot of the meeting is: establishment of CSTO collective force comprised of the previously existing structures – Collective Rapid Reaction Force, peacekeepers, bilateral groups, rapid deployment forces of the Central Asian region and others.

According to Vladimir Putin, the CSTO made progress in all major areas of activity: in military cooperation, the fight against international crime, especially drug trafficking and crisis response. The preparation was started for peacekeeping operations, the CSTO military potential is augmenting. In September, Armenia hosted regular joint exercises of CRRF – “Interaction-2012”.

It should be re-emphasized that CSTO is not a military bloc, but an inter-national security organization, responding to all the complex modern challenges in this area. Under the CSTO auspices, regional anti-drug operation “Canal” is regularly carried out, and it has resulted in the seizure of around 245 tons of illicit drugs and 9,300 firearms. It responds to information challenges too.

In 2011, President Nursultan Nazarbayev proponed to establish national cyber-borders to counter destructive information. This topic was discussed at the CSTO informal summit in Astana last year, and the idea is being put into practice, with the special units conducting a “Proxy” operation, tracking the sites that act in the interests of terrorist organizations, drug groups and organized crime groups. Through it 1126 information resources were suspended and about 1,5 thousand criminal charges were brought against those involved in creation and operation of these sites.

The meeting also covered the situation in Syria and the Middle East and other problematic aspects.

A package of 18 resolutions was adopted at the CSTO summit. In accordance with the procedures of the Organization, the CSTO presidency was passed to the Kyrgyz Republic.

The next meeting of the Collective Security Treaty Organization will be held next May in Bishkek.

Acting jointly

The main topics of the EurAsEC Interstate Council’s meeting concerned the Community’s reforming and optimization of its structures. The leaders reviewed a set of financial issues of the organization, including the 2013-budget. A package of 15 documents was adopted. The EurAsEC was called the most successful integrated union of the CIS, given the launched Customs Union and the Common Economic Space. N.Nazarbayev noted that economic integration in Eurasia today is the main unifying force of our countries.

In the EurAsEC frames, important economic projects are implemented, specifically. creation of a common energy system, a single cycle in the production of peaceful nuclear energy, construction of Eurasian transport corridors and others.

Add to it financial integration tools: the Eurasian Development Bank currently funds a number of projects in Belarus, Kazakhstan, Russia and Tajikistan. The Anti-crisis Fund has helped the member countries cope with the global crisis, sustain the economies and was conductive to the integration in the region.

Kazakhstan leader also touted the need to intensify the work within the EurAsEC Parliamentary Assembly and effective use of the EurAsEC Court.

The meeting also reviewed the progress and prospects of interstate target programs “Innovative Biotechnologies” and “Reclamation of areas impacted by uranium mining industries.”

For the program on innovative biotechnologies more than 1 billion Russian rubles was budgeted. Under it, in 5 years over 50 new innovative products are to be developed with high added value in medicine, agriculture and other important areas. This is the first major initiative of the EurAsEC members’ scientists.

The second program, worth 1 billion 200 million rubles, will be launched in the coming year. On it, the Soviet-times uranium mining fields in Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Kazakhstan are to be reclaimed in 6 years.

Joint implementation of these projects will strengthen ties in the scientific and environmental protection fields. Basing on the EurAsEC experience, the Eurasian Economic Union will be built, which takes alignment of all the current integration structures, that should seek a synergistic effect, Nursultan Nazarbayev emphasized.

– Both the CU and CES work for creation of the Eurasian Economic Union, – he went on. – This alliance will be based on a voluntary, equitable integration, effective joint economic development, the aim of which is to promote the Community onto a strong position in the global economy. Besides enabling conditions need be created for other EurAsEC members to join in. Membership of new countries in the Customs Union and Common Economic Space will boost markets, industrial production and agriculture, create new jobs and encourage investment.

– I am sure that this meeting will identify new sectors of the integration process in order to achieve mutually beneficial results, – said Nursultan Nazarbayev.

By the way, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan are willing to join in the integration processes, the Customs Union in particular.

The EurAsEC priority areas are invariably socio-humanitarian, transport and communication issues, development of energy market and implementation of interstate target programs.

It was resolved to hold the next meeting of the EurAsEC Interstate Council in Moscow in the second half of 2013.

Time imperative

The protection of national economies within a specific geographic area is becoming a trend of global development. In this respect, tremendous work has been accomplished in a historical short lapse of time. In just three years it was possible to establish a common trade policy within the Customs Union. For almost a year the Eurasian Economic Commission is operating as a single permanent regulator of the CU and CES. This supranational structure, as previously reported, is in charge of all the customs issues, technical regulations, external trade, protective and other measures.

Meeting of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council is an illustrative example of a successful partnership in this respect. It is also a new interaction tool.

The integration process goes ahead, and the meeting attendees reconfirmed their intention to enhance partnership in it.

At the subsequent joint briefing President Nursultan Nazarbayev said that the EurAsEC remains one of the most advanced integration structures on the post-soviet space. -The organization has achieved its goals, but it does not mean that it has to go off-stage. We reserve it because Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan also intend to enter the Customs Union, but it takes time and all the necessary documentation.

Eurasian Economic Union will be equal, voluntary and everything will be decided by consensus. There will not be infringement on anyone’s sovereignty and independence, said the President.

The “troika” of the Customs Union and the Common Economic Space is determined to make this interaction attractive to foreign partners. Negotiations with Vietnam are ahead on making the Agreement on free trade zone.

At this stage, as noted, the integration requires a lot of attention, which is why the meetings of heads of state within the EurAsEC will be held annually in one of the three capitals, Nursultan Nazarbayev announced at the briefing.

To speed up formation of the Common Economic Space, 17 base agreements were adopted, creating conditions for a free movement of goods and services, capital and labor. A lot of work is yet ahead in harmonization of the three countries’ laws, developing and adopting 50 more documents. This work will run on a phased action plan, adopted by the heads of state.

– The Eurasian Economic Union is to be launched from 1 January 2015. The Kazakh President said he is pleased with the work accomplished in Moscow. So is the Russian President. -I think we are on the right track, N.Nazarbayev said.

The multidimensional integration has a lot of positive results. For example, since the launch of the CU, the turnover went 10% up, whereas with the outside world- only 4.7% up. The sides expressed confidence that integration is the path to prosperity and well-being of our countries and peoples.

…The same day Nursultan Nazarbayev was in talks with Vladimir Putin that resulted in the signed RK-RF Action Plan for 2013-2015 and intergovernmental MoC in the development of emergency response to accidents and possible development on its basis of the additional navigation and information services in the field of transport.