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EEC and OSCE continue interacting amid COVID-19 pandemic

EEC and OSCE continue interacting amid COVID-19 pandemic

6/16/2020

Improving the business and investment environment, creating stable financial conditions, digitalizing contracting and public procurement processes as well as involving a wide range of participants in economic activities through digital technologies were the focus of attention during the Second Preparatory Meeting of the 28th OSCE Economic and Environmental Forum. 

The event was held on June 15 via videoconferencing and brought together about 200 participants from the OSCE countries as well as key international organizations in the region. Thomas Greminger, Secretary General of the OSCE, addressed the participants with welcoming remarks, noting the importance of interaction during the COVID-19 pandemic despite suspended face-to-face contacts between representatives of the States in the region.

"At a time when countries and regional associations try to minimize the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic, activities on improving investment and business climate, enhancing management efficiency as well as digitalizing business processes is of key importance," noted Goar Barsegyan, Deputy Director of the Eurasian Economic Commission's Integration Development Department.

Goar Barsegyan told about the Commission's work on the Strategic Directions for Developing the Eurasian Economic Integration until 2025, focusing on the prospects for improving business environment in the EAEU. The EEC representative also informed about some plans to create the Union’s digital ecosystem which will cover, in particular, customs regulation procedures, increasing public mobility with regard to employment opportunities in any of the Union States.

During the discussion, the forum attendees considered the most important aspects of improving business climate and increasing transparency by creating universal digital platforms for efficient interaction between citizens and the State, improving business processes, etc.

The EEC representative drew the OSCE partners’ attention to a set of digital projects within the EAEU. They enable maintaining transparency in interaction between business and state authorities, promoting the involvement of a wide range of the Union States’ citizens into economy and reducing the number of face-to-face contacts between individuals and legal entities, which is particularly relevant during the coronavirus pandemic.

 

The Forum's agenda also included such items as promoting economic growth and stability, and digitalization as an element furthering transition to "green economy".

The EEC is regularly involved in the activities within the "OSCE second economic basket". Earlier in 2020, the First Preparatory Meeting of the 28th OSCE Economic and Environmental Forum held on February 17, compared notes on the Albanian chairmanship's priorities in the field of economic cooperation between the OSCE States and international organizations, including the EAEU. The final meeting of the forum is scheduled for September 10-11, 2020 in Prague.​