Eurasian Economic Union developing free trade with Singapore, Iran

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BISHKEK (TCA) — The Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) of Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Russia and Singapore signed an agreement establishing a free trade zone between the EEU and Singapore following a summit of EEU leaders held on October 1.

Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, who attended the summit in the Armenian capital, Yerevan, stressed that signing a free trade agreement between the EEU and Singapore is the outcome of two-year-long negotiations which have led to a mutually beneficial solution, BelTA news agency reported.

“The Eurasian market is a large market at the crossroads of Europe and Asia. It has a great potential for economic growth especially in logistics and the digital sphere. Singapore is interested in these areas and is eager to cooperate in them,” Lee Hsien Loong said.

The free trade agreement gives advantages not only in trade. “We believe that the agreement will facilitate development of industries in the EEU member states, investment, and establishment of contacts between people and businessmen. I am sure that the agreement will bring our regions closer together,” Lee Hsien Loong added.

Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani, who also attended the summit in Yerevan, expressed hope that Iran would enjoy enhanced trade and economic cooperation with Russia, Armenia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Belarus within the framework of the Eurasian Economic Union as an agreement between Iran and the five EEU states will become operational on October 27, Iran’s PressTV news agency reported.

“The signing of a trade agreement between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Eurasian Economic Union indicates Iran’s comprehensive and constructive viewpoint and its political will to help expand multilateral and regional economic and trade relations,” Rouhani said.

As the first step, some 502 Iranian goods can be exported to EEU countries by receiving preferential tariffs as a nearly zero tariff will be applied to them, Rouhani said, adding that further steps would be taken in this regard in the future.

Sergey Kwan

TCA