Deputy Foreign Minister, Andrei Yevdochenko, stated that Belarus was ready to sign the Customs Code of the Customs Union, already signed by Russia and Kazakhstan on May 28. "I want to say that the Customs Code has exceptions. Belarus is ready to sign it, but without exceptions", Deputy Foreign Minister said.
«Now, we are rapidly preparing a package of agreements on economic union. But the most important thing in this project that even in economic union the Russian side sees no possibility to solve the issues of oil, petroleum products, gas and other raw materials. That is, in fact, in both the Customs Union and the Common economic space, the Russian side withdraws the energy sector from integration», BelTA quotes the deputy minister.
Andrei Yevdochenko noted that Belarus «categorically disagrees» with Russia’s further application of duties in mutual trade of the three countries and called their possible application not only in free trade regime, but also in the Customs Union as «complete nonsense».
As Telegraf previously reported, recently the most sensitive issue for Belarus when creating the Customs Union has been to cancel export duties on oil products imposed by Russia in 2010.
«The current oil export duty is an especially weighty exception from free trade regime, but levying, from January 1 of this year, export customs duty on certain categories of petroleum products, supplied to the republic of Belarus from Russia, violates international obligations of the Russian Federation», declared in Belarusian foreign ministry on June 7.
In late May, the Prime Ministers of Russia and Kazakhstan having contradictions with Belarus agreed to launch the Customs Union from July1 in bilateral format. But after a while, Minsk agreed to continue its participation in the formation of the CU with exceptions on certain issues, including duties on petroleum products and vehicles.