Eurasian Customs Union

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Eurasian Customs Union
An orthographic projection of the world highlighting Belarus, Kazakhstan and Russia in green.
Working language Russian
Member states
 -  Total 20,007,860 km2
12,432,307 sq mi
 -  2013 estimate 171,116,970[1]
 -  Density 8.36/km2
13.46/sq mi
GDP (PPP) 2013 estimate
 -  Total $2.947 trillion[2]
 -  Per capita $17,411
GDP (nominal) 2013 estimate
 -  Total $2.407 trillion[3]
 -  Per capita $14,221

The Eurasian Customs Union or the Customs Union of Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Russia (Russian: Таможенный союз Белоруссии, Казахстана и России), came into existence on 1 January 2010.[4] The Customs Union was launched as a first step towards forming a broader European Union-type economic alliance of former Soviet states.[5] The member states are planning to continue with economic integration and were set to remove all customs borders between each other after July 2011. On 19 November 2011, the member states put together a joint commission on fostering closer economic ties, planning to create a Eurasian Economic Union by 2015.[6][7] Since 1 January 2012, the three states are a single economic space called Common Economic Space to promote further economic integration.[7][8] The Eurasian Economic Commission is the regulatory agency for the Customs Union and the Eurasian Economic Community.[7]

The creation of the Eurasian Customs Union was guaranteed by 3 different treaties signed in 1995, 1999 and 2007. The first treaty in 1995 guaranteeing its creation, the second in 1999 guaranteeing its formation, and the third in 2007 announced the establishment of a common customs territory and the formation of the customs union.

Market access[edit]

Nominal World GDP and GDP of Customs Union of Belarus, Kazakhstan and Russia in 2011.
  European Union: $17.1 trillion (25%)
  United States: $14.8 trillion (22%)
  China: $7.2 trillion (10%)
  Japan: $5.8 trillion (8%)
  Other countries: $22.2 trillion (32%)
  Customs Union of Belarus, Kazakhstan
 and Russia: $2.1 trillion (3%)

Access of products to the single territory of the Customs Union[9] is granted after products have proved to be compliant with the requirements of Customs Union Technical Regulations which are applicable to the product. As of December 2012, 31 Customs Union Technical Regulations have been developed[10] covering different types of products, some of which have already come into force, while others will come into force in the period 2012 – 2015. Some Technical Regulations are being still developed.

Before Technical Regulations come into force, the following approvals are the basis for access to the Customs Union Member Countries:

  • National approvals/certificates – they are good for access of product to the country where this approval/certificate has been issued.
  • Customs Union Certificates/Approvals issued in accordance with the “List of products subject to mandatory conformity approval in the Customs Union” – such Certificate/Approval is valid in all the three Member Countries of the Customs Union.
See also: GOST

Opinion polling[edit]

Beginning in 2012, the Eurasian Development Bank (established by Russia and Kazakhstan) conducts regular opinion polling of selected states with regards to Eurasian integration projects. The following question was asked to the residents of the selected countries, translated from Russian to their native language:

  • "Беларусь, Казахстан и Россия объединились в Таможенный союз, который освободил торговлю между тремя странами от пошлин, и создали Единое экономическое пространство (по сути - единый рынок трех стран). Как Вы относитесь к этому решению?"
  • Unofficial English translation: "Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Russia have united in a Customs Union, which has removed tariffs from their mutual trade, and created a Common Economic Space (essentially - a common market of the three countries). How do you feel about this decision?"

The results for the sum of answers "Favorably" and "Very favorably" are below:[11][12][13]

Country 2012 2013 2014
 Russia 72% 67% 79%
 Belarus 60% 65% 68%
 Kazakhstan 80% 73% 84%
 Armenia 61% 67% 64%
 Azerbaijan 38% 37% 22%
 Kyrgyzstan 67% 72% 50%
 Moldova 65% 54% 49%
 Tajikistan 76% 75% 72%
 Uzbekistan 67% 77% 68%
 Georgia 30% 59% 53%
 Turkmenistan - 50% -
 Ukraine 57% 50% 31%

Russia, Belarus, and Kazakhstan are current members of the Customs Union. Georgia is a CIS non-member state which participated in polling. Turkmenistan opted out of polling in 2012, but participated in 2013.

According to opinion polls by Razumkov Centre and Sociological group "RATING" Eurasian Customs Union membership in Ukraine was favoured by 22 % (Razumkov Centre in June 2014) and 17% ("RATING" in November 2014).[14][15]


United States opposes the Customs Union, claiming it as an attempt to "reestablish a Russian-dominated USSR-type union among the Post-Soviet states".[16]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Immigration Drives Russian Population Increase". RIA Novosti. Retrieved 25 September 2014. 
  2. ^ Retrieved 27 March 2014.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  3. ^ Retrieved 27 March 2014.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  4. ^ Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan Agree on Customs Union Saturday, 5 December 2009
  5. ^ Soviet Union to be restored in the form of new customs union, Kyiv Post (18 December 2009)
  6. ^ "Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan sign pact". UPI. 19 November 2011. Retrieved 20 November 2011. 
  7. ^ a b c Ukraine cannot get observer status at Eurasian Econ Union due to Association Agreement with EU, Russia, Interfax-Ukraine (14 June 2013)
  8. ^ Barron, Lisa (1 October 2013). "Belarus eases current account deficit with Customs Union, Common Economic Space". Cistran Finance. Retrieved 25 October 2013. 
  9. ^ "What approval is needed to enter the market of the Customs Union of Belarus, Kazakhstan and Russia". 
  10. ^ "Customs Union Technical Regulations". 
  11. ^ "Интеграционный барометр ЕАБР 2012". Центр интеграционных исследований Евразийского банка развития. 13 September 2012. Archived from the original on 25 October 2012. Retrieved 13 September 201.  Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  12. ^ "Интеграционный барометр ЕАБР 2013". Центр интеграционных исследований Евразийского банка развития. 13 September 2013. Retrieved $1 $2.  Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  13. ^ "Интеграционный барометр ЕАБР 2014". Центр интеграционных исследований Евразийского банка развития. September 2014. Retrieved $1 $2.  Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  14. ^
  15. ^ Assessment of the situation in the East. Foreign policy orientations of the population, Rating (2014/11/20)
  16. ^ Failed reset?: United States decries “sovietization” of former USSR states

External links[edit]