Russia and four other ex-Soviet nations, viz., Belarus, Kazakhstan, Armenia and Kyrgyzstan on 23 December 2014 finalised the creation of Eurasian Economic Union (EEU).
The decision to finalise the creation was taken during the CSTO (Collective Security Treaty Organization) meeting in Moscow, Russia.
The creation of this economic alliance is intended to bolster their integration among the ex-Soviet states and will come into existence on 1 January 2015.
The EEU will also help promote free trade among the member countries.
Besides, it will help coordinate the financial systems and regulate the industrial and agricultural policies along with labour markets and transportation networks among the member countries.
The new union will have a combined economic output of 4.5 trillion US dollars and bring together 170 million people.
The ambitious economic union though is intended to bolster the ties among ex-Soviet states but it immediately showed signs of fracture as Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko sharply criticized Moscow for damaging Belarus' economic interests with moves to restrict its exports to Russia.
Belarus is sandwiched between Russia and European Union members Poland and Lithuania. It has profited handsomely from Moscow's ban on imports of EU food in retaliation to Western sanctions against Russia. It profited by boosting imports of food from the EU nations and reselling it to Russia.
However, the Russian authorities retaliated by halting imports of Belarus' own milk and meat, citing alleged sanitary reasons, and banning transit of Belarusian food bound for Kazakhstan through its territory on suspicion that much of it ended up in Russia.
About Eurasian Economic Union (EEU)
The Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) is an economic union of states located primarily in northern Eurasia. A treaty aiming for the establishment of the EEU was signed on 29 May 2014.
In 1994, President of Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbayev, first suggested the idea of creating a regional trading bloc during a speech at Moscow State University.
When: 23 December 2014