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Kyrgyzstan Wants To Join Russia-Belarus-Kazakhstan Customs Union


BISHKEK -- Kyrgyzstan will try to join the Belarus-Kazakhstan-Russia Customs Union this year, RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service reports.

Kyrgyz Economic Development Minister Uchkun Tashbaev said the cabinet decided at its session today that Kyrgyzstan should join the customs union and a special commission has been established to pursue membership.

Tashbaev said officials of the current customs union member states will meet in Yalta, Ukraine, on May 15 and hold another gathering in September to discuss, among other issues, Kyrgyzstan's intent to join the union.

Tashbaev said all necessary documents and resolutions that pertain to the customs union should be adopted and ratified by Kyrgyzstan by that date.

The Belarus-Kazakhstan-Russia Customs Union went into effect on January 1, 2010. The union offers trade privileges to member countries, including lower export-import tariffs and reduced prices on many goods.

The Ukrainian and Tajik governments have also expressed an interest in joining the union.

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