NEWS AND EVENTS
January 17, 2006
President of Uzbekistan receives EurAsEC Secretary-General
President of Uzbekistan Islam Karimov met visiting Secretary-General of the Eurasian Economic Community (EurAsEC) Grigoriy Rapota on 17 January.
At the meeting, the sides exchanged views on the issues of development of integration within EurAsEC.
Uzbekistan\'s official joining of EurAsEC will be the main issue on the agenda of the next community summit, Islam Karimov said at the meeting with Grigory Rapota. The next meeting of the EurAsEC heads of state will be held in Saint Petersburg on 25 January.
EurAsEC Secretary-General said Uzbekistan\'s inclusion into the community would expand effectiveness of the organisation.
Leaders of Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan set up EurAsEC in October 2000. Among its achievements are introduction of the system of visa-free movement of citizens, the possibility to enter universities and mutual acknowledgement of educational diplomas.
It is expected that the community members will solve all issues related to Customs Union until the year-end. Currently, 60% of customs tariffs for import of goods from third countries have been unified, and the target is 75%, which covers about 12,000 goods.
During Islam Karimov\'s visit to Saint Petersburg on 6-7 October 2005, the agreement was reached on integration of EurAsEC and the Central Asian Cooperation Organisation (CAC) via accession of Uzbekistan to EurAsEC. Uzbekistan was the only country in CAC, which had not membership in EurAsEC.
Noting that EurAsEC and the Central Asian Cooperation Organisation has similar goals and tasks, the President of Uzbekistan then proposed unifying these two structures in order to eliminate duplication of their actions and unnecessary expenses.