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Steadily rising living standards identified as end goal of Belarusian-Russian integration programs

15:00, 12 July

To ensure the steady growth of citizens' prosperity is one of the end goals of the currently discussed package of programs on enhancing Belarus-Russia integration, BelTA learned from an interview of Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Belarus to Russia Vladimir Semashko with the news agency RIA Novosti.

According to Vladimir Semashko, the construction of the Union State of Belarus and Russia is going through a new stage, an upsurge. Upon instructions of the heads of state the Belarusian government and the Russian one have drafted an action plan on the further implementation of the Union State foundation treaty. The document covers practically all spheres of Belarus-Russia cooperation. “Once it is implemented, we will have a brand new, deeper format of integration that focuses on developing the economic component. Speedy establishment of common and united markets in the Eurasian space is one of its features. The plan will be implemented through the realization of concrete industry-specific Union State programs focusing on areas of joint work,” he said.

According to the diplomat, the package of integration documents is in the final reconciliation stage. The Union State Council of Ministers will have to review it as the next step. After that the integration package will be forwarded for consideration of the heads of state, namely the Supreme State Council of the Union State of Belarus and Russia. “I expect we will have to go through all the steps this year, possibly by mid-autumn in order to operate in the format of the joint economic platform of the Union State in 2022,” Vladimir Semashko said.

“The package of integration documents that we discuss today has clear end goals: strengthening the bilateral allied relations, enabling additional conditions for economic growth and ensuring steadily rising living standards of citizens,” Vladimir Semashko stressed. “As we deepen integration further, we will focus on economic interaction between the two countries, thereby solving such important issues for our peoples as employment, income levels, and prosperity. We will be able to calculate what kind of growth there will be - in digital, monetary terms - only after the programs start working."

The ambassador noted that the program on the unified industrial policy is of particular importance. It is necessary to carry out a kind of regrouping of all the industrial potential Belarus and Russia have as part of the program, correlate it with the resource and scientific base and work out steps to accelerate the development of enterprises and jointly penetrate markets of third countries. "And the implementation of programs on forming unified energy markets will be the foundation of a unified industrial policy," he said. "We hope to equalize the operating conditions for Belarusian and Russian enterprises, create equal and fair conditions for competition."

The diplomat also drew attention to programs on working out the joint agricultural policy. “Much attention is paid to food security,” he said. “As a consumer every one of us feels price fluctuations in various categories of goods. To avoid these, we have to be as self-sufficient as possible in food production. And most importantly at affordable prices. "

“We also intend to implement a coordinated policy in the social and labor sphere, to ensure further harmonization and convergence of legislation in the field of social protection of the population, labor protection, and pensions, to look once again at the matter of observance of equal rights of citizens. On the whole, whatever area of integration we may look at each of them affects the life of our people, salaries, pensions, social benefits and support measures one way or another", Vladimir Semashko concluded.

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