Nazarbayev confident in the integration between the European Union and the EAEU

Victoria Panfilova, columnist of Nezavisimaya Gazeta, specially for Vestnik Kavkaza
Nazarbayev confident in the integration between the European Union and the EAEU

President Nursultan Nazarbayev expressed confidence that the integration of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) and the European Union (EU) is inevitable. Experts have noted that the gateway to the EAEU will be Kazakhstan. Its investment attractiveness was noted in Italy and they are willing to invest more than half a billion dollars in the Republic.

In the documentary film "About the Main Things with Nazarbayev" that aired on the evening of July 1 on state channels in Kazakhstan, the head of state, speaking about the future, said: "I do not want to prophesy again, but I'm absolutely convinced that our Eurasian Union and the European Union are bound to cooperate. It is prescribed by Allah." Nazarbayev is confident that the time of sanctions will soon end, and Europe will need the Russian economy, so it will be a great partnership. The president of Kazakhstan said that now the European Union is interested in cooperation with the EAEU. Since the Eurasian Union is a long-term project aimed at economic development. Europeans are showing interest in creating a free trade area with the Eurasian Economic Union.

"The Eurasian Economic Union is a long-term project aimed at the development of the economy," the head of state noted. He stressed that the economies of the countries of EAEU are different. "But is the European Union identical? The most powerful, developed country is Germany, France follows it, then Eastern Europe, which is very underdeveloped, it is impossible to compare Italy and Greece today. But they created the European Economic Community! We all need to see the root, as the saying goes. The Eurasian Economic Union is a long-term project aimed at economic development," Nazarbayev said.

The head of the sector of economic development of post-Soviet countries of the Center of Post-Soviet Studies of the Institute of Economics, Elena Kuzmina, believes that Nursultan Nazarbayev is trying to turn Kazakhstan into the gateway to the EAEU. "And it's real, because Belarus and Russia, to varying degrees, are under sanctions, while Armenia and Kyrgyzstan, due to geopolitical reasons, the volume of their economies, cannot be considered as the leaders of the EAEU. Thus, out of five members of the alliance, Kazakhstan looks more attractive today, and its economy is organically integrated into the world," Elena Kuzmina told VK.

The Italians have already expressed their interest in expanding cooperation with Kazakhstan, a few days ago they signed a package of agreements on the amount of half a billion dollars in such areas as production of agricultural machinery, foodstuffs, textile products, machinery, the petroleum sector and construction. Elena Kuzmina considers that Nazarbayev’s proposal is more promising because in the conditions of the anti-Russian sanctions Europeans won’t work with Russia directly. But they may cooperate with the help of Kazakhstan. The director of the Institute of Strategic Studies of the EAEC, professor of the Russian Academy of National Economy and Public Administration under the President of the Russian Federation, Anatoly Spitsin, said that the agreements signed with Italy are important in terms of the situation in the world economy and the political situation in the regions, primarily in Europe. Russian scientists have noted that Italy is one of the largest investors in the economy of Kazakhstan. «Starting from 2005, the inflow of direct investment from Italy amounted to about $6 billion. At the current time about 200 companies with Italian investments work in Kazakhstan. Therefore investment agreements are extremely necessary for the real sector of the Kazakhstan economy and new technologies: in the production of agricultural and food products, textiles, engineering and construction," he commented to VK. According to him, the increase of the investment attractiveness of Kazakhstan is largely due to the activities of the EAEC. The stability of relations between investors and the state show Kazakhstan as the best "gateway" for entry into the huge market of the EAEC, with a capacity of 180 million people and a volume of GDP of more than $2 trillion. And after the end of the negotiations on joining the WTO, the possibilities can significantly increase.

Nursultan Nazarbayev has been promoting the idea of ​​Eurasian integration since 1994, when there were strong centrifugal tendencies in the post Soviet Union territories. He stresses the economic integration, distancing themselves from the political component. In the documentary film, he stressed once again that "it is primarily an economic union." ‘‘It was offered to remove the word "economic " and leave only the word "union". Like the European one. But I said it was too early. Let's show people that our economy will help other countries," Nazarbayev said. He reminded that Kazakhstan is a country that has no outlet to the sea, but it has access to the huge markets of Russia and China. "I call China and Russia our sea, and this is the truth. We are opening a huge market for Kazakh goods,’’ Nursultan Nazarbayev pointed out.