Tajikistan Wants to Join Russia-Belarus-Kazakhstan Customs Bloc
Tajikistan has signaled readiness to join the Customs Union of the ex-Soviet republics of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan.
The Central Asian nation's decision to become part of the post-Soviet customs bloc is motivated by a desire to reap the benefits of closer economic integration, Eurasian Economic Community (EurAsEC) Secretary General Tair Mansurov said on Wednesday, as cited by RIA Novosti.
"Today Tajikistan's President Emomali Rahmon announced that Tajikistan is both willing to join the Customs Union and has offered to ... start creating a working group," Mansurov said.
Earlier, Kyrgyzstan had also expressed readiness to join the Customs Union.
Based on the 2000 Treaty on establishing the Eurasian Economic Community, the presidents of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan signed in Dushanbe in October 2007 an agreement on creating a common customs space and the Customs Union. The agreement stipulates that other EurAsEC member states can join the Customs Union as soon as they are prepared for this move.
EurAsEC consists of Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, and Tajikistan since its creation. Armenia, Moldova, and Ukraine have observer status.