Belarus President calls for creation of Customs Union in 1H 2007

President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko called for the signing of papers on creation of the Customs Union in the first half of the year to come.

"We need to contribute maximum effort to complete the internal preparatory procedures for the signing of the documents on creation of the legal framework for the Customs Union by the end of 2006, and sign these papers in the first half of 2007," said Lukashenko, presiding at the EurAsEC meeting.

Belarus President said that "unfortunately, the completion of the formation of a full-value Customs Union is not happening as fast as we would like it to be." In fact, he noted, during the year the countries of the EurAsEC made practically no progress in forming a common customs tariff. "Its agreement is still 62% complete," Lukashenko said.

The formation of the Customs Union, according to Belarus President, largely depended on the coordination of the negotiation positions of the members of the Community in accession to the WTO. "However there is no full agreement of the states on this issue," he said.