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Singapore leader urges feasibility study for free trade zone with Eurasian Economic Union

May 19, 19:14 UTC+3 SOCHI
According to Vladimir Putin, the creation of a free trade zone between the Eurasian Economic Union and Singapore would boost bilateral trade turnover
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Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong

Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong

© Alexei Druzhinin/Russian Presidential Press and Information Office/TASS

SOCHI, May 19. /TASS/. It is necessary to prepare a feasibility study for making an agreement on a free trade zone between Singapore and the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said at a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

"We assume that the agreement on a free trade zone between Singapore and the EAEU will support the development of trade. A feasibility study to assure us that an agreement like that is economically viable, would be the first step towards making such an agreement," he said.

According to Lee Hsien Loong, many Russian companies, not only big ones such as Gazprom and Lukoil, but many others, particularly in the IT sector, already work in Singapore. "I assume that by creating a free trade zone not only will we boost the volume of trade turnover but also diversify our trade," he said.

Singapore's Prime Minister also mentioned R&D works among promising areas for bilateral cooperation. "At a regional scale we’re pleased with the fact that Russia’s role at the ASEAN platform has been rising. And of course it would be perfect if we develop cooperation and create special relations and a free trade zone, between ASEAN and EAEU," he added.

Free trade zone will boost trade

According to Vladimir Putin, the creation of a free trade zone between the Eurasian Economic Union and Singapore would boost bilateral trade turnover.

"Obviously the creation of a free trade zone between the Eurasian Economic Union and Singapore has pushed the volume of trade turnover up," Putin said.

The relations between Russia and Singapore are developing, President said, adding that Moscow will "facilitate further development of the ties" between the states.

Putin also noted that mutual investments are growing. Russia’s investment in Singapore currently totals $2.5 bln while Singapore’s investment in the Russian economy stands at $1 bln, he said.

Putin added that "many Russia’s partners have taken interest in cooperation with the Eurasian Economic Union, and we will eagerly consider the issue."

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