“Our Tajik counterparts are examining conditions for possible membership,” Matviyenko said. “We hope very much that Tajikistan will also join the Eurasian Economic Union eventually.”
Tajikistan’s upper house speaker Mahmadsaid Ubaydulloyev said a final decision to join the union will be made after the ongoing negotiations.
“We support integration essentially,” he added.
The Eurasian Economic Union, which envisages free movement of goods, services, capital and workforce and is based on the Customs Union of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan, will become operational from January 1 next year.
A treaty to create the union was signed by the presidents of Russia, Kazakhstan and Belarus, Vladimir Putin, Nursultan Nazarbayev and Alexander Lukashenko, in May of this year. Membership is open to other states assessed as sharing the assembly's aims and principles, its founders say.
Tajikistan has pledged to do everything possible to saturate Russia’s consumer market as the two countries’ upper house parliamentary lawmakers signed a cooperation agreement on Thursday.
“In response to the hasty sanctions imposed outside Russia, Tajikistan citizens have always been together with Russians,” Tajikistan’s upper house speaker Mahmadsaid Ubaydulloyev said after the signing. “We will do everything possible to saturate the Russian consumer market.”
Federation Council Speaker Valentina Matviyenko noted positive dynamics in inter-state trade against the background of general economic recession in the world. Trade between Russia and Tajikistan had grown by 21.7% in eight months, she said.
Over the last nine months, two-way trade reached $1.5 billion - 1.5 times more than in the same period last year, Ubaydulloyev added.
The two countries’ regions are due to sign five new agreements later in the day.