12 Apr 2024 Entrepreneurs from EAEU countries and Iran to continue cooperation within Free Trade Agreement The Eurasian Economic Commission's Council approved an action plan aimed at implementing the Free Trade Agreement between the Eurasian Economic Union and the Islamic Republic of Iran dated December 25, 2023. The document envisages, inter alia, deepening cooperation between the parties' business communities.   "In particular, the issue of Iran's participation as a partner in the next Eurasian Economic Forum will be explored. As part of the meeting it is planned to organize and conduct the EAEU – Iran business dialogue," said Andrey Slepnev, EEC Minister in charge of Trade. In order to create a platform for business dialogue between the parties, it is planned to amend the current Memorandum of Cooperation between the Business Council of the Eurasian Economic Union and the Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture dated September 25, 2019 or conclude a new memorandum. The activities within this platform will take into account such areas of sector-specific interaction as cooperation in transport, development of multimodal transportation, joint projects in research and development, establishment of cooperation ties between enterprises, projects of the fuel and energy complex, as well as energy efficiency, energy saving and renewable energy sources, education, medicine, and telecommunications. Proposals received from the business community will be elaborated and considered by the Joint Committee, a governing body established to discuss issues related to the application of the Agreement and further development of trade relations between the EAEU and Iran. Additionally, the parties will prepare a joint action plan of trade facilitation organizations, including business forums, exhibitions, business missions, etc.
12 Apr 2024 EAEU expands list of light industry goods subject to marking with identification means The Eurasian Economic Commission's Council has considered a proposal submitted by the Russian Federation to expand the list of light industry goods subject to marking with identification means and has decided to amend existing regulatory legal acts of the Eurasian Economic Union. The amendments concern only the types of products subject to marking approved by Decision No. 127 of the Commission's Council "On the introduction of marking of certain light industry goods with identification means" dated November 18, 2019. The marking will be extended to suits, shirts, knitwear, articles made from faux fur and certain other types of clothing. In respect of these goods, the Union Member States may impose a ban on the circulation of unmarked products from April 1, 2024. "The gradual inclusion of new goods in the number of goods subject to marking is a logical step in developing the common system, enabling the consumer to make sure of their authenticity and increasing the competitiveness of honest market participants by reducing the share of illegal trade," emphasized Andrey Slepnev, EEC Minister in charge of Trade. It should be noted that the new commodity groups will be marked, as before, according to the unified rules. Along with that, the provisions of the basic technological organizational model of the EAEU system for marking goods with identification means, approved by Decision No. 19 of the Commission's Council dated March 5, 2019, shall be taken into account. Therefore, it will not be necessary to re-mark goods when they are circulated in the Union's territory.
11 Apr 2024 EEC, business representatives and experts discussed prospects for developing Union digital trade A seminar Digital Trade: Global Experience and Development Prospects in the EAEU was held at the Eurasian Economic Commission's venue, moderated by Andrey Slepnev, EEC Minister in charge of Trade. “Our seminar today is dedicated to the development of digital trade — this area is broader than e-commerce, which we have been involved in for some time. Digitalization is also taking place in other areas, but we understand that the work must be intensified, and this is reflected in the Eurasian Economic Path Declaration adopted by the leaders of our countries,” the Minister said, opening the event. “In this regard, it is important for us to hold a meeting with the business and expert community at the start in order to highlight the priorities and main points of focus where we can be effective as a Union.” Boris Chalov, a leading lecturer at N.E. Bauman MSTU, head of the logistics company CHB Forwarding LLC, urged to primarily determine step-by-step scenarios for the movement of goods and services, accompanied by the generation and transfer of various documents. Director General of Industrial Cryptosystems JSC Mikhail Chekanov emphasized that what mattered most for the development of digital trade was digital infrastructure, data security, electronic document flow, electronic signatures, security and sustainability of software supplies. In turn, Andrey Filippov, Deputy Director for International Cooperation at ANO Digital Economy, proposed to prepare a set of existing solutions for the implementation of artificial intelligence technology in trade across the EAEU countries, which could be scaled up throughout the Union. Maxim Rozhnev, Deputy Director for Government Relations at Yandex e-commerce services, spoke about the company’s specific experience in using artificial intelligence in trade, which made it possible to significantly reduce the time and monetary costs of sellers using e-commerce services. Yulia Shlenskaya, President of the KVT Company Group, focused on the issues of digital payments and settlements, which she identified as topic number one for the entire foreign trade industry today. She also spoke about joint projects on seamless technologies with large banks, which allow clients to share the document flow with a customs representative and logistics operator. Sevak Sarukhanyan, Director of the Digital Initiatives Directorate of the Eurasian Development Bank, proposed using the unique experience of marketplaces and the development of electronic commerce in the Eurasian space to promote common standards for electronic document flow. Nikolay Dmitrik, expert of the UNCITRAL working group, drew attention to the problem of compatibility when developing international solutions. In his opinion, it is important that the EAEU engages in systematic work to explore global practices and regimes already adopted or planned to be adopted in the future. Alexander Daniltsev, Director of the Institute of Trade Policy at the National Research University Higher School of Economics, proposed creating a system to support the development of educational potential and human resources in the field of digital technologies within the Eurasian Economic Union. According to the agreement reached during the seminar, all its participants will share their accumulated experience with the EEC for their subsequent use in preparing an action plan for the implementation of the Eurasian Economic Path Declaration in terms of digital trade development. The Eurasian Economic Path Declaration highlights digital trade as one of the promising areas for the EAEU development. Digital trade in a broad sense includes both traditional digitalization of trading activities (payments, documents and document flow), electronic commerce, and new areas of interaction in trade, namely: expanded use of artificial intelligence, introducing the “data economy”, regulating the activities of platforms, etc. Considering that the development of digital trade creates both opportunities and some risks for the functioning of the Union’s economy, it is necessary now to determine the main contours of its support and regulation.
05 Apr 2024 Vahagn Ghazaryan: "The Union and the Commission take specific steps on digitalizing trade processes" This was stated by Vahagn Ghazaryan, Director of the Eurasian Economic Commission's Department for Customs Tariff and Non-Tariff Regulation, speaking at the session "Developing digitalization on its way forward: support for institutional initiatives" as part of the 11th Asia-Pacific Trade Facilitation Forum (APTFF) held on April 2 in Samarkand (Uzbekistan) under the auspices of the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP). "The key areas of trade processes digitalization in the Union are marking goods with identification means, developing foreign and domestic e-commerce, as well as non-tariff regulation electronic documents and information applied by businesses and state authorities," he said. According to Vahagn Ghazaryan, digital technology introduction in the Eurasian Economic Union is mainly focused on creating favorable conditions for trade both within the integration association and with its third-country partners. As part of the session attended by the EEC Department's Director, there was a discussion of innovations and initiatives put forth by organizations engaged in developing and supporting the digitalization, with a view to introduce and further promote digital technology in sustainable supply chains. Representatives of the Universal Postal Union, the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation (CAREC) Institute, the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), the German Agency for International Cooperation (GIZ), etc. also took floor during the event. The Asia-Pacific Trade Facilitation Forum is a leading regional venue for exchanging the advanced trade facilitation experience and knowledge.
27 Mar 2024 Andrey Slepnev and heads of international organizations in Geneva agree to promote trade dialogue to overcome common challenges During his working visit to Geneva on March 25-26, Andrey Slepnev, Minister in charge of Trade of the Eurasian Economic Commission met with the heads of the United Nations Office in Geneva, the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the International Trade Center (ITC) to discuss prospects for dialogue and coordination of efforts to overcome common challenges. UNCTAD Secretary-General Rebeca Grynspan and Andrey Slepnev noted the significance of the results of collaboration in the areas of sustainable development, regional economic integration, macroeconomic policy, trade facilitation, competition policy and consumer protection. As a result of the meeting, a new three-year cooperation program was approved and an agreement was reached to develop an open and constructive dialog on such topical issues on the international agenda as trade aspects of the climate agenda and regulation of electronic commerce. During the conversation with UNECE Executive Secretary Tatiana Molcean, the EEC Minister in charge of Trade expressed interest in continuing contacts to develop effective solutions at the regional level and to coordinate actions, including on the digitalization of international transport corridors and ensuring the compatibility of various components of the digital infrastructure emerging in the region. A new cooperation plan until 2026 was also agreed upon at the meeting. Andrey Slepnev stressed that "strengthening cooperation in the areas included in the Program of Cooperation with UNCTAD and Cooperation Plan with UNECE for the next three-year period 2024-2026 will contribute to achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals and implementing the provisions of the Declaration on Further Development of Economic Processes within the Eurasian Economic Union until 2030 and for the period until 2045, the "Eurasian Economic Path". The EEC Minister in charge of Trade and Director General of the World Trade Organization Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala discussed the outcomes of the WTO's 13th Ministerial Conference held in Abu Dhabi (UAE) in February this year. Andrey Slepnev informed the head of the WTO about the implementation of the trade policy of the Eurasian Economic Union in the conditions of reorientation of trade flows and against the background of increasing risks of fragmentation of the global economy and trade. "Clear rules and boundaries for the application of climate regulation measures must be developed at the international level to prevent trade restrictions and fragmentation. Such rules should be developed on the basis of agreements already in place within the multilateral trading system, including the basic principles of non-discrimination, openness, efficiency and transparency," noted the EEC Minister in charge of Trade. At the meeting with Pamela Coke-Hamilton, Executive Director of the International Trade Center, the EEC Minister in charge of Trade stressed the importance of bringing together key international organizations and regional groupings to develop common approaches to addressing climate change, which would include, inter alia, a dialogue among trade policymakers aimed at ensuring transparency of measures and removing possible barriers. ITC and EEC agreed to "synchronize their watches" in various areas of mutual interest, including digitalization of trade. Andrey Slepnev discussed with Tatyana Valovaya, Head of the United Nations Office in Geneva, the general objectives of EEC's interaction with UN system organizations in light of implementing the Sustainable Development Goals and the Eurasian Economic Path Declaration. For reference The EEC Trade Unit headed by Minister in charge of Trade Andrey Slepnev coordinates the Eurasian Economic Commission's interaction with the UNECE, UNCTAD, WTO and ITC.
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