Can Turkey get closer to the EAEU?

Can Turkey get closer to the EAEU?

Turkish Minister of Economy Nihat  Zeybegchi, during his meeting yesterday with Kazakh colleague Yerbolat Dosayev in Astana, stated that his country is interested in activization of cooperation with the Eurasian Economic Community (EAEU).

"The Minister of Economy of Turkey Nihat  Zeybegchi offered to intensify Turkish cooperation with the countries of the EAEU," the statement says.

According to the press service, the parties discussed issues of trade-economic relations and investment cooperation between the two countries.

Turkish economist Aydin Sezer spoke about how realistic the cooperation between Turkey, a member of the Customs Union of the European Union, and the countries of the EAEU is today to Vestnik Kavkaza.

According to him, today, when Turkey has obligations to the EU, the close cooperation about which the Turkish minister stated is hardly possible.

The EAEU aims at low customs tariffs between member countries, as well as free trade between member states of the union. "It's like the EU Customs Union, which includes Turkey, and to which Turkey has obligations. EAEU countries have duty-free trade. The Minister's statements cannot become a reality, since Turkey is in the Customs Union. One country cannot be part of two different organizations simultaneously," the expert stated.

He explained that Turkey is not entirely free in its foreign trade policy for cooperation with Russia, or with any other country, because of the fact that it is closely connected with the Customs Union.

The expert noted that Turkey can only build bilateral relations with these countries, but, for example, it cannot reduce the customs duties for these countries, because it is the responsibility of the Customs Union only and is not in the hands of Turkey.