25th anniversary of Eurasian integration: from idea to reality
The process of the Eurasian integration affected the life of every person and influenced the relations between the peoples of the Union’s member states.
For the first time, the idea of the Eurasian integration was voiced by First President of Kazakhstan – Leader of the Nation Nursultan Nazarbayev on the 29th of March, 1994 at Moscow State University. He focused on the commonality of territory, history, culture - the renewed idea of Eurasianism as a basis for further productive cooperation. The project of the Eurasian Union was based primarily on the observance and joint protection of the national interests of the participating states, with a focus on the benefits of their economic interaction. The Union was supposed to be based on the principles of equality, non-interference in each other’s internal affairs, respect for sovereignty and inviolability of the state borders.
Under these conditions, the Eurasian Union acted as a tool for a pragmatic, concerted and less painful transition to the market economy and integration into the world economic system.
“The present-day EAEU is a huge market with a foreign trade turnover of over 750 billion dollars, the total GDP of which is 2 trillion dollars, and the population exceeds 180 million people. The member states of the association have made sure a positive growth trend and achieved a significant increase in the volume of foreign and mutual trade. International cooperation develops actively. In the near future, we see the EAEU as an open economic community organically integrated into the world economic system as a reliable bridge between Europe and growing Asia”, First President of Kazakhstan – Leader of the Nation Nursultan Nazarbayev said in his welcoming speech, spoke by Darkhan Kaletayev, the first deputy head of the President’s Administration of Kazakhstan, at the International Scientific and Practical Conference dedicated to the 25th anniversary of the Eurasian initiative of N. Nazarbayev.
According to Nazarbayev, the EAEU, being the core of integration in the Eurasian space, has the potential to harmonize with new projects and initiatives emerging in this territory.
“Expanding trade and economic ties with key partners and new growing markets should be transformed into an impetus to enhance the role of the EAEU throughout the continent. The pairing of the EAEU and an initiative on building of the economic belt of the Silk Road, deepening cooperation with the SCO and the EU is seen as important in this direction”, Yelbasy said.
The welcoming speech of Russian President Vladimir Putin was read by head of the Presidential Administration for Interregional and Cultural Relations with Foreign Countries, Vladimir Chernov.
“Over the past quarter century, the countries of the Eurasian region have passed a long way. From an idea of uniting equal states set forth by First President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev at Moscow State University to a successful current economic union, the Eurasian integration project has fully proved its effectiveness. The EAEU member countries are building up trade, economic, investment and humanitarian ties. Cross-border and interregional cooperation is developing dynamically. Large-scale joint projects are implemented in various fields. Interaction with other multilateral structures of the continent is established. And, of course, it is important that the integration processes within the framework of the EAEU provide additional opportunities for strengthening the strategic partnership and alliance between Russia and Kazakhstan for the benefit of our fraternal peoples. I am sure that you will hold interesting, informative discussions. The proposals and initiatives developed during the conference will serve to further consolidate the Eurasian Economic Union”, Chernov conveyed Putin’s words to the conference participants.
The conference was attended by about 300 people, including representatives of the leadership of the Eurasian Economic Commission, parliaments, presidential administrations, foreign ministries of Russia and Kazakhstan, heads of foreign diplomatic missions in the Kazakh capital, leading experts, public figures, journalists of the Eurasian Economic Union.
Viktor Sadovnichy, the rector of Lomonosov Moscow State University, academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences, was among the participants as well.
“2019 can rightly be called the anniversary year of the Eurasian integration. The idea expressed by Nursultan Nazarbayev to create the Eurasian union meant the proclamation of new principles of relations based on respect, sovereignty and independence of each state. At that moment, it was important, in conditions when the countries of the post-Soviet space began forming their statehood and were acutely aware of the significance of independence. It is deeply natural that the idea of the Eurasian union was voiced by the Kazakh Leader, because Kazakhstan is located in the very center of Eurasia - the largest continent of the Earth. We can say that this is one of the most Eurasian countries”, V. Sadovnichy stated.
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