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Industry Ministry: Lukashenko's statements will not influence EAEU economic conditions

February 03, 17:56 UTC+3

The Russian Ministry of Industry and Trade disagrees with $15 bln estimate of Belarus economy losses from membership in the EAEU made by Belarus president

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Russia’s First Deputy Minister of Industry Gleb Nikitin

Russia’s First Deputy Minister of Industry Gleb Nikitin

© Mikhail Metzel/TASS

MOSCOW, February 3. /TASS/. Statements made by Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko will not influence on operation of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), Russia’s First Deputy Minister of Industry Gleb Nikitin told reporters on Friday.

"I think his statements will not influence on economic conditions we have created [inside the EAEU - TASS]," Nikitin said responding to the question from TASS whether a threat to cooperation within the EAEU exists in connection with statements made by Belarus President.

The President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko ordered withdrawal of Belarus main specialists from customs authorities of the Eurasian Economic Union earlier today. He said, "We in the EAEU fell by 40% in the turnover in 2015 and added 18% more last year. Is the 60% drop in the EAEU normal?"

Leaders of the EAEU countries (Russia, Kyrgyzstan, Armenia and Kazakhstan) signed the customs code of the EAEU on December 26, 2016 in St. Petersburg. 

Lukashenko did not sign the document. The head of Belarus only approved the draft agreement on the EAEU Customs Code as a basis for talks.

Nikitin also said that the Russian Ministry of Industry and Trade disagrees with $15 bln estimate of Belarus economy losses from membership in the EAEU made by Lukashenko.

"We strongly disagree with this estimate. We have a different opinion; we believe all countries are definitely winners from participation in the EAEU. The Belarus economy could not sustain any losses," Nikitin said.

"In our opinion, we have mutually beneficial cooperation, particularly in industry terms. Our cooperation is mutually beneficial; not a single economy is losing as a result of functioning of this system," the official said.

The Ministry of Trade will review the situation in detail, Nikitin said. "We will check calculations upon submission from the Belarus party but we believe everyone wins," he added.

President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko said earlier today at the press conference that losses of his country as a result of unequal prices and conditions in the EAEU amounted to $15 bln.

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