Kyrgyzstan is planning to join the Customs Union (CU) and the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) by the end of the year, Kyrgyz President Almazbek Atambayev said Monday at a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Sochi.
"Kyrgyzstan intends to develop firmly and consistently and to optimize relations with brotherly Russia, our strategic ally. We would like to join the Customs Union and Eurasian Economic Union by the end of the year," Atambayev was quoted by Interfax news agency as saying.
Putin, for his part, said issues concerning integration processes were discussed during the meeting, especially "issues related to Kyrgyzstan's move of joining the EEU and the CU."
"We have many plans, such as investment plans especially in energy, and serious plans to develop cooperation in certain sectors. We have agreed long ago that we will see how work proceeds in all these directions," he was quoted by Interfax as saying.
Also in the day, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov disclosed that Russia agreed to provide financial aid worth about 500 million U.S. dollars to support Kyrgyzstan's development and its integration into the CU.
The roadmap for accession envisages Kyrgyzstan's entry into the CU and the EEU before Jan. 1, 2015, and efforts to avoid negative effects for its own economy and the CU member states, according to the Itar-Tass news agency.
The CU, which became fully operational on July 1, 2010, currently comprises Russia, Kazakhstan and Belarus, while Armenia and Kyrgyzstan are waiting to join the economic alliance.
The EEU is an economic union which is planned to be launched by a treaty signed in May 2014 between the leaders of Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan. The union will officially go into effect on Jan. 1, 2015.
Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said in May that the treaty to create the EEU was especially important in an environment where new risks and challenges for Russia may pop up.
Russia is going to develop cooperation with other countries despite the sanctions imposed by the United States, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Monday.
Western sanctions against Russia evoked by the political row over Ukraine forced Moscow to further strengthen its ties with Central Asian countries, and to expand cooperation into continents like South America.