MINSK, March 18 (Itar-Tass) – Belarus and Russia have reached a considerable progress in the construction of the Union State, but “found it beyond their strength” to implement the whole range of their plans, Belarusian state-run mass media put on display President Alexander Lukashenko’s interview with Russia’s RT TV channel.
“Over the years, we reached a significant progress, although we found it beyond our strength to fulfil those functions and those construction plans, which were envisaged by the Treaty [on the Union State],” he said.
“In due times, we worked out the agreement on the setting up of the Union State. If you open the document, you can find there a certain action plan aimed at the creation of the Union State and key components of the Union State, including common governing bodies, single currency and so on,” he said. However, in his words, the two sides, most probably, are not ready for this due to both impersonal and internal reasons.
“In the mean time, the process of the Union State building gave an impulse to a very interesting new formation – the Customs Union, and now to the Common Economic Space, which we are now trying to turn into the Eurasian Economic Union,” the Belarusian president said.
While commenting some words that the Eurasian integration is a soft of the attempt to revive a mini-Soviet Union, Lukashenko said, “It is dependent upon personal taste. One compares us with mini-Soviet Union, another with the European Union. Let them say what they please. But we should go forward.”
In his words, over the years of the Customs Union existence, Russian-Belarusian trade reached 45 billion U.S. dollars. “This is a colossal growth of trade turnover. Herewith, this became possible not only through Belarus’ purchase of Russia’s energy resources. Both our import and export grew equally. In other words, this gave a colossal impetus to the economic development of both Russia and Belarus. The same words may be related to Kazakhstan,” Lukashenko said.
In the mean time, he stated, “regrettably, it is impossible to revive the Soviet Union.” “It is impossible to revive it. But we can adopt the best things from those times in order the new independent states could establish more efficient cooperation between each other,” the Belarusian president said.