Russia says no obstacles to Ukraine entering Customs Union

11:55, February 27, 2010      

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Moscow does not exclude the possibility that Ukraine might join the customs union involving Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan, a Foreign Ministry spokesman said Friday.

"Russia sees no legal obstacles to Ukraine's entry into the Customs Union," spokesman Andrei Nesterenko said at a press briefing.

However, Nesterenko said the issue would require careful consideration before any action could be taken.

"This will need the consent of the EurAsEC (Eurasian Economic Community) member states at the first stage and of the Customs Union member states at the second stage," he said.

The statement follows reports that new Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych was willing to hold talks on the country's entry into the customs union.

Yanukovych has said his administration would not continue with former President Viktor Yushchenko's pro-Western policies, and would revive long-established relations with Russia and other countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States.

Russia, Kazakhstan and Belarus in late November 2009 signed an agreement to form a customs union, paving the way for a single economic space. The document took effect on Jan. 1, when the three countries introduced common foreign trade tariffs.

Source: Xinhua
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