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EAEU signs free trade deal with Iran, cooperative agreement with China

Russia, China, Iran, and the EAEU countries develop economic cooperation while America continues to pursue economic isolation

A drafted agreement that establishes a free trade zone between EAEU countries and Iran, which was signed by Russia last week, is moving forward, with a provisional accord being agreed upon at the Astana economic forum. The agreement establishes a zone of reduced or duties free trade zone between its signatories.

Armenpress reports:

YEREVAN, MAY 17, ARMENPRESS. The Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) and Iran on May 17 signed a provisional free trade zone agreement during the Astana economic forum, TASS reports.

“The current agreement includes an initial list of goods with lowered or cancelled customs fees upon its enforcement. The agreement covers half of mutual trade”, Tigran Sargsyan, chairman of the Board of the Eurasian Economic Commission (EEC), said, adding that in 2017 trade between the EAEU and Iran reached 2.7 billion US dollars.

According to the EEC Board Chairman, after the agreement comes into effect, its signatories will be spared payment of customs duties.

The list for the EAEU includes meat and fat-and-oil products, certain types of confectioneries and chocolate, cosmetics, electronic and mechanical equipment. Iran will enjoy tariff preferences on vegetables, fruits, dried fruits and building materials.

“Average import duties for industrial goods will go down by seven percentage points for Iran, and by 3.5 points for the EAEU countries. Import duties for farming products will be down by 19 points for Iran and by five points for the EAEU”, Sargsyan said, adding that a full-fledged agreement may be signed in three years.

Also at the economic summit, China signed off on a trade and economic cooperation agreement with EAEU members, boosting exports of EAEU goods to China.

EurAsia Daily reports:

The Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) and China have signed a treaty on trade and economic cooperation in Astana on May 17, where the Global Challenges Summit has kicked off today.

The document was signed by the head of the Eurasian Economic Commission Tigran Sargsyan and a representative of the Chinese Commerce Ministry Fu Ziying.

The agreement is aimed at improving the access of goods to the Chinese market through regulations on limiting trade procedures, raising the level of transparency and boosting the level of cooperation in all trade spheres.

It is worth mentioning that previously Kazakh National Economy Minister Timur Suleymanov said that the agreement is non-preferential and does not envisage lifting duties or automatic decrease of non-tariff barriers.

The talks were held on the basis of a decision of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council of May 8, 2015. Representatives of the Eurasian Economic Commission, national governments of the union, as well as experts and officials from Chinese governmental agencies.

Russia, China, Iran, and the EAEU countries continue to develop economic cooperation while America continues to pursue economic isolation. The agreement comes just a week after Trump announced his withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal, reimposing economic sanctions, and adding fresh ones, striking yet another blow at the European economy, which has been seeking ways of cooperating economically with Iran. Additionally, America is slamming Germany’s bid for the North Stream 2 oil and LNG project, while potentially following through on trade tariffs with China, that extend to western businesses.

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