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Customs Union is vitally important for Kyrgyzstan - president

December 29, 2011, 12:33 UTC+3

Atambayev said stability is “the main thing” for Kyrgyzstan, but warned about efforts to “rock” it

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BISHKEK, December 29 (Itar-Tass) — Membership of the Customs Union of Russia, Kazakhstan and Belarus and the Common Economic Space is vitally important for Kyrgyzstan, President Almazbek Atambayev told a news conference on Thursday.

“No matter who says what, I don’t see so far any other way but membership of the Customs Union,” the president stressed. “We won’t be allowed any longer to earn on re-exports of goods. Already now big problems emerge on the borders with Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan. Weather we want it or not, but we must join. I have told Dmitry Anatolievich Medvedev that when we join, we want a preference for several years,” the president said, stressing that Russia “is the main strategic partner of Kyrgyzstan”.

Atambayev believes the country must begin producing goods. “Speculative activity – it was the period when we earned our living by that. Market owners had good profits. At the same time, the problems of people living around the Dordoi market (one of the biggest in Central Asia), have stayed in place. All these problems were left to us, the state. The owners gained, while the country has stayed with problems,” the president stated.

“I promise that if I am safe and sound, it will be not Atambayev who will begin turning into a dragon, but Kyrgyzstan will begin turning into an “Asian dragon” because it is a rich country with resources. I believe that we must turn into a small but strong Asian dragon, and we have everything for that,” the president stated.

Atambayev said stability is “the main thing” for Kyrgyzstan, but warned about efforts to “rock” it. “It is not us who need instability, but those who want to see us weak,” the president stressed.

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