The meeting focused on the Commonwealth’s current activity, including cooperation in innovation, intellectual property protection, and countering the production and distribution of counterfeit products.
Delegation heads present at the meeting:
Prime Minister of the Republic of Belarus Andrei Kobyakov;
Prime Minister of the Republic of Kazakhstan Bakytzhan Sagintayev;
Acting Prime Minister of the Kyrgyz Republic Sooronbai Jeenbekov;
Prime Minister of the Russian Federation Dmitry Medvedev;
Prime Minister of the Republic of Tajikistan Kokhir Rasulzoda;
Prime Minister of the Republic of Uzbekistan Abdulla Aripov;
First Deputy Prime Minister of Azerbaijan Republic Yaqub Abdulla oglu Eyyubov;
Deputy Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers of Turkmenistan Byashimmurad Khodzhamamedov;
Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Ambassador of Moldova to the Russian Federation Andrei Negutsa;
Chairman of the Executive Committee and Executive Secretary of the Commonwealth of Independent States Sergei Lebedev.
This year, the CIS presidency passed to Russia, with Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan serving as co-presidents. The main areas of focus are as follows:
Consistent development and improvement of the CIS, taking into account the latest developments in the global economy and world politics, and in former Soviet nations. The challenges and threats facing our countries put front and centre the issues of modernising CIS integration bodies, starting with those that are industry-related, as well as closer coordination of our nations’ positions on international issues, especially if they deal with common threats such as terrorism, international crime, illegal migration and drug trafficking.
We face a great deal of joint work ahead to remove existing trade barriers on the basis of the Free Trade Agreement, and to broaden cooperation in e-trade, state procurement and technical regulation.
We will create conditions for the formation within the CIS of a self-sufficient food market, the development of mutually beneficial cooperation in the areas of transport and energy, and we will contribute even more to supporting joint innovation activities and research projects in various fields.
This year, we intend to apply our efforts to develop these areas as dynamically as possible, relying on the Eurasian Union’s experience of integration. The linkage of economic formats that are underway in the CIS and the EAEU is an important goal for us.
One of the main goals of our presidency is deepening ties in the spheres of education, culture, information, tourism, and sports. Research grant programmes, internships, and youth cultural exchanges are just a few of the activities planned for the year.
Several nations of the Commonwealth fielded teams for the Russian national professional skills competition, WorldSkills Russia. The event was a good training ground for the global WorldSkills event that will take place here, in Kazan, in 2019. Several more events will be organised as part of the Year of the Family.
Today, we are taking over a dozen decision that deal with cooperation in the area of nuclear energy and transport security. We will promote cooperation in protecting intellectual property rights and in the fight against counterfeiting. We are taking decisions on deepening cooperation in innovations as well.
- Agreement on the joint use of the experimental facility at Kazakhstan Tokamak for Material Testing;
- Decision of the CIS Heads of Government Council on the Plan of priority measures in implementing the Strategy of Transport Security in the CIS member-states during international transit operations for 2017-2019;
- Decision of the CIS Heads of Government Council on determining remuneration for members and the chair of the Expert Commission, compensation of their expenses, payment of remuneration and expenses as per Supplement 4 to the Free Trade Zone Agreement of 18 October 2011;
- Decision of the CIS Heads of Government Council on the 2017-2020 Action Plan to complete the Interstate Programme of Cooperation in Innovations of the CIS Member-States through 2020;
- Agreement on rapprochement in legal and technical standard regulation, conformity assessment, unification, accreditation and metrological support in the peaceful use of nuclear energy;
- Agreement on the alignment of the CIS member-states in training, retraining and professional development of specialists in geodesics, cartography, cadastre and Earth remote sensing;
- Cooperation Agreement on counteracting the production and distribution of counterfeit products;
- Protocol on amendments to the Cooperation Agreement on legal protection of intellectual property and establishment of the Interstate Council on Legal Protection of Intellectual Property of 19 November 2010;
- Decision of the CIS Heads of Government Council on updating the Regulation on the operator of the Interstate Programme of cooperation in innovations of the CIS member-states through 2020;
- Decision of the CIS Heads of Government Council on the Interstate Radio Navigation Programme of the CIS member-states through 2020;
- Decision of the CIS Heads of Government Council on amendments to the Regulation on the Office for the coordination of efforts against organised crime and other dangerous types of crime in the CIS member-states;
- Decision of the CIS Heads of Government Council on the implementation of the Decision of the CIS Heads of State Council of 16 September 2016 on the Economic Court of the Commonwealth of Independent States.
Excerpts from the transcript:
Dmitry Medvedev: Over a dozen documents have been signed, related to various issues, including cooperation in innovation, fighting counterfeiting and defending intellectual property rights. We discussed transport and nuclear energy security issues and science and technology personnel training programmes. Priority was given to cooperation in science and technology, and innovation.
A three-year package of measures was adopted. It provides for more active participation in various projects of national development institutions and the shared use of infrastructure for the purpose of innovation. The CIS Technology Parks Association will also be created.
Building an effective interstate system to commercialise innovations is not our forte yet, either in Russia or in other CIS states. It is therefore essential to share our commercialisation experience.
An agreement on the joint use of a unique experimental facility, which is being created at Kazakhstan’s National Nuclear Centre, was signed. It is known as a tokamak for material testing – an experimental thermonuclear device for studying and testing materials under energy stress, which is similar to the ITER international project. The results of this research will be crucial for modernising industrial reactors, as well as for developing advanced energy reactors.
We have many joint projects in the peaceful use of nuclear energy. The rules of national technical regulation in this field differ. Their unification is in our common interest. This is important for the reliability and safety of such facilities. Today, we agreed on shared approaches and signed a corresponding agreement.
Innovation policy, protection of intellectual property rights and fighting counterfeiting – we are updating legislation in this area. There are plans to continue this work under the cooperation agreement that was signed.
An interstate radio navigation programme was signed through 2020. It is focused on advanced scientific and engineering projects and the preferential use of the electronic component base that has already been developed in CIS countries and is being manufactured there. The programme’s funding level is about 600 million roubles.
All CIS countries are interested in ensuring the greater safety of passenger and cargo transit. Our cooperation has been based on unified approaches. Today, a plan of action was adopted for the next three years.
Question: There is an agreement on the creation of a common electricity market in the CIS. When can it start actually working and what will Russia’s role in this process be?
Dmitry Medvedev: This agreement was signed in 2007 and it is one of the core agreements, but until recently its implementation had been inadequate.
There is the CIS Electric Power Council. Nevertheless, we have only just now begun working to bring national laws in line with common standards. The rules of market regulation, energy security and energy capacity require common approaches. Even within the framework of existing power flows, regulations should be unified.
The implementation of this agreement should be facilitated by a project that is being carried out in the Eurasian Economic Union. We are creating a single electricity market also in the Eurasian Union (it should be created by 1 July 2019). The work conducted in the Eurasian Union could be proposed to other CIS states as a model. It will lay the groundwork for a single approach – within the framework of both the CIS and the Eurasian Union.
Russia plays a leading role here because it is the largest electricity market, a country that supplies electricity to a number of other countries. We have long-term agreements in this area. Our rules, our experience in electricity market regulation also provide guidelines to other states.