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The EEC and the Government of the Hellenic Republic signed a Joint Declaration on Cooperation

The EEC and the Government of the Hellenic Republic signed a Joint Declaration on Cooperation

6/26/2017

Signing of the Joint Declaration on Cooperation between the Eurasian Economic Commission (EEC) and the Government of the Hellenic Republic took place in Moscow on 24 June.

On behalf of the EEC, the document was signed by the Member of the Board — Minister in charge of Integration and Macroeconomics, Tatyana Valovaya. On behalf of the Greek Government it was signed by the Alternate Minister of Foreign Affairs, Georgios Katrougalos.

This is the first document institutionalizing the cooperation between the EEC and the government of a EU member state. Its signing became possible after the negotiations between the EEC Chairman, Tigran Sargsyan, and the Greek Government held in January 2017.

The Declaration provides for cooperation on a broad economic agenda, taking into account the competences of the EEC and the obligations of Greece arising from the law of the European Union. In particular, the EEC and the Government of the Hellenic Republic intend to exchange experience and information in such areas as technical regulation, application of sanitary, veterinary & sanitary, and quarantine phytosanitary measures, public procurement, financial markets, intellectual property, trade policy, competition policy and antitrust regulation, etc.

The purpose of the document is to increase trade turnover between the Member States of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) and Greece.

“Joint declaration is important both for the EAEU states and for Greece,” Tatyana Valovaya noted. “It gives us the hope for the intensification of trade and economic cooperation, using the potential of all the EAEU states in trade with Greece, changing the current situation where the trade turnover of the EAEU and Greece is, in fact, the trade turnover between Russia and Greece.”

The importance of the Joint Declaration in the context of the intensification of trade and economic ties between Greece and Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan was also noted by Georgios Katrougalos.

Collaboration within the framework of the declaration will be carried out, among other things, by consulting on issues within the competence of the parties, conferences, forums, seminars, consultations, round tables, fairs, exhibitions and other events involving representatives of business communities. The ultimate goal of this cooperation is promotion of the development of mutually beneficial economic relations between the states, as well as direct contacts between representatives of the business communities. The first step on the road of practical cooperation between the EEC and the Government of Greece within the framework of the Joint Declaration could be holding of the Greece-EAEU Business Forum in the framework of the annual exhibition in Thessaloniki in September 2017.

In the opinion of the EEC Minister, the forthcoming forum will not only be a convenient platform for broad informing about the opportunities of the common market of the Eurasian Economic Union, but also a place for establishing business contacts. “In Thessaloniki, for example, the EEC representatives could provide relevant information on the technical regulation and application of SPS measures, so that Greek businessmen can learn first-hand what rules and requirements there are in the EAEU, how they should be observed, so that they can enter the market without any problems,” Tatyana Valovaya said. – And the topic for the further events could be customs administration, since from January 1, 2018 the new Customs Code of the EAEU will come into force.”

The Greek side confirmed its readiness to render the necessary assistance for holding this forum and proposed to organize the next major event in one of the EAEU Member States.

In accordance with the Joint Declaration, the EEC and the Greek Government will contribute to the establishment of the Greece-Eurasian Council, a permanent platform for the dialogue of business stakeholders, the EEC and authorities of the EAEU Member States and Greece.

According to the EEC Minister, the signed document can become a precedent for other member states of the European Union and is important for establishing a dialogue with the EU in the long run. “We know that there are other countries in the European Union that understand the economic necessity of building a normal dialogue with the EAEU,” the EEC Minister stressed. – Therefore, we expect that sooner or later such a healthy economic pragmatism in the European Union will triumph and we will be able to establish an official dialogue with Brussels. We are glad that we are making the first step in this direction precisely with Greece.”