MOSCOW – Russian lawmakers on Friday ratified a treaty on the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) that groups Russia, Kazakhstan and Belarus and that is to involve more republics of the former Soviet Union.
The treaty, signed on May 29 by the presidents of the three countries, was ratified by the State Duma, or lower house of the Russian parliament, unanimously with only one lawmaker abstaining, the Duma press service said.
Leonid Slutsky, head of the State Duma Committee for Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) Affairs, said the treaty would create not only a common Eurasian economic space, but also a single security space.
“In the near future, the common educational and information space will emerge in the Eurasian space, which will be followed by the Eurasian inter-parliamentary assembly and full-fledged Eurasian parliament,” the Interfax news agency quoted Slutsky as saying.
The treaty will have to go through the Federal Council, or upper house of the Russian parliament.
Armenia is expected to sign an agreement to join the EEU during a CIS summit due in the Belarusian capital of Minsk on Oct. 10. Kyrgyzstan is also heading to membership in the Moscow-led Customs Union and the EEU by the year-end.
Parliaments of Belarus and Kazakhstan plan to ratify the EEU treaty on Oct. 1 and Oct. 7 respectively. The EEU is expected to officially come into effect on Jan. 1, 2015.