Andrei Kobyakov took pat in the international science and practice conference 25 Years of the Commonwealth of Independent States: Results and Prospects

Completing the development of the agreement on free trade in services in the Commonwealth of Independent States is a priority goal. Prime Minister of Belarus Andrei Kobyakov made the statement during the opening ceremony of the international science and practice conference 25 Years of the Commonwealth of Independent States: Results and Prospects on 28 September.

“Completing the development of the agreement on free trade in services is a priority goal. The agreement will allow us to work in the WTO+ format,” noted Andrei Kobyakov.

In his words, the interstate protocol on state procurement was signed in 2016. “By doing this we have set forth a goal to expand the free movement of goods and services through aligning conditions of access to public procurement programs and securing transparency of the corresponding procedures in the CIS,” Andrei Kobyakov said.

The PM stressed that 25 years is an important milestone in the history of the Commonwealth of Independent States. “Over a quarter of a century the union has made great headway in developing cooperation between its member states in a wide range of areas: economy, science, sport, culture, and, of course, security and antiterror matters,” he said.

According to the Belarusian head of government, economic cooperation occupies a special place in this list. “Given the current volatile financial situation, the progress we have made in establishing mutually beneficial economic collaboration looks like a serious positive factor that mitigates the negative effect of the global market problems,” he added.

According to Andrei Kobyakov, the signing of the CIS free trade agreement became one of the vital measures in developing mutual trading relations and free competition, securing protection of business interests. “The free trade zone is the basis for us to preserve sustainable economic ties, despite the fact that our member states also make part of different integration associations in the post-Soviet space,” he said.

He also said, that the Commonwealth of Independent States is an important, in-demand, and relevant interstate association. “The position of Belarus has always been consistent and open: the CIS is an important, in-demand, and relevant interstate association which enables its participants to solve the entire spectrum of topical issues of interregional cooperation,” Andrei Kobyakov noted. In his words, Belarus suggests using this message to coordinate efforts to improve the CIS. “I am convinced that the participants of the conference will put forward many constructive proposals aimed at enhancing the role of the Commonwealth and promoting its adaptation to modern realities,” Andrei Kobyakov said.

The head of government reminded that in a month Minsk will once again become the center of integration events as it will host the session of the Heads of Government Council. “I would like to assure you that we are doing our best to gear up for this event, we want to hold it at the highest level to reaffirm the importance of our cooperation,” Andrei Kobyakov said. “We have been already speaking about the versatile agenda of the forthcoming summit which includes the forecasts of production and consumption of energy resources, the formation of the information society and the development of the intellectual property market. Plans have been made to sign corresponding agreements.”

The Prime Minister emphasized that in the year of its anniversary the CIS continues developing. “Today we are focused on the improvement of the organizational structure of the CIS, its adaptation to modern realities,” he said.

The international workshop conference entitled as 25th Anniversary of the Commonwealth of Independent States: Results and Prospects is taking place in Minsk on 28-29 September. Partaking in the conference are over 200 representatives of the CIS member states: representatives of government bodies, diplomatic missions accredited in Belarus, ambassadors and CIS plenipotentiaries, representatives of the CIS bodies and basic organizations, members of the Commission of Economic Affairs under the CIS Economic Council, heads of the CIS biggest scientific and education institutions, leading scientists and specialists, cultural figures. The Minsk conference will summarize the results of the CIS’ 25-year activity and work out recommendations to enhance the efficiency of the Commonwealth.

The forum will include four sections highlighting economic cooperation and improvement of the legal basis in the CIS member states; science and innovative cooperation in the CIS, cooperation of the CIS member states in culture, tourism, sport and youth policy; and collaboration in security, crime and terrorism prevention. A meeting of the Council of the International Association of Academies of Sciences and a meeting of the Consultative Board of the Association of Academies of Sciences to discuss the protection of intellectual property and technology transfer will also be held as part of the forum. Leading scientists and specialists will discuss science and technology cooperation in space exploration, promising avenues of mutually beneficial cooperation.

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