Eurasian Economic Union & African Union Commission To Sign Agriculture Deals

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Russia, representing the Eurasian Economic Union, and the African Union Commission are to sign off a variety of deals paving the way for better EAEU / African trade ties as the trade integration processes developing in Africa provide additional opportunities for cooperation. This specifically refers to the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) which has eliminated taxes on 90% of all goods and products traded between African countries, great news for businesses trading in and with Africa who wish to combine products and process them in one location. Russia is also looking at establishing Free Trade Zones to allow Russian and EAEU countries to do just this, with export back to Eurasia.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, speaking on the eve of the Russia-Africa Summit being held in Sochi said “We support establishment of close working contacts between the African Union Commission and the Eurasian Economic Commission, and are signing a memorandum of understanding tomorrow.”

Putin also announced Russia’s intention to expand its network of trade offices in Africa, as well as establish new contacts, and support business. According to the President, the work carried out by the Coordinating Committee on Economic Cooperation with the African Countries, established under the auspices of the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, has been well worthwhile. The president said that this structure assists Russian entrepreneurs in developing the markets of African countries and helps businesses in implementing new joint investment projects.

“Of course, we will support such plans at the state level.” Putin said. He cited the prospects of Gazprom and Lukoil, who are implementing oil and gas projects in Africa, Alrosa – a company that develops diamond deposits, and Yandex, Russia’s online portal, which is helping African states solve information security issues and develop a digital economy. Putin also added that Rosatom was ready to offer African partners a “ready-to-operate” nuclear industry and construction of research centers based on multipurpose reactors.

Russia-Africa Trade To Double By 2025
The Russian President was also bullish about Russian and EAEU trade with Africa, stating “I believe that it is within our power to at least double the volume of trade in the next 4-5 years. We are now exporting more agricultural products to the markets of third countries than weapons. Weapons sales have reached US$15 billion, and agricultural products have already reached about US$25 billion. Therefore, we have very good development potential, there are things to discuss, all this allows us to expect further growth of trade figures.”

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Russia Briefing is written by Dezan Shira & Associates. The firm has 27 years of operations in China and assists Russian and Foreign investors establish operations into the country. Please contact us at russia@dezshira.com or visit us at www.dezshira.com

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