Russia calls for a free trade zone between the European Union (EU) and the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU), Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Saturday.
The suggestion will be brought up at a ministerial council meeting of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe in December in Basel, Switzerland, Lavrov said at the assembly of the Russian council on foreign and defense policy.
"The work is underway and it has become a part of the diplomacy. I am sure that we will come to the point, which is now called 'the integration of integrations'," Lavrov said.
German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier supported the idea of establishing dialogues between the EU and the EEU, according to Lavrov.
"It is time after all to arrange dialogue between the EEU and the EU. The EEU will be a very important element to build the bridge between Europe and the Asia-Pacific region," Lavrov was quoted by the Interfax news agency as saying.
The idea of setting up the EEU, an EU-style alliance, was proposed and agreed in May when the three heads of Belarus, Kazakhstan and Russia met at a summit in Astana, capital of Kazakhstan.
The Russian foreign minister said the EU is Russia's major collective partner, and "nobody is going to shoot itself in the foot and reject cooperation with Europe."
"Our economy is of course damaged by the sanctions, but so are the economies of the countries which had introduced them," Lavrov said.