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Agreement on the Customs union between the Russian Federation and Republic of Belarus

of January 6, 1995

The government of the Russian Federation and the Government of the Republic of Belarus which are hereinafter referred to as - Contracting Parties,

aiming at further development of the balanced and mutually beneficial economic relations;

wishing to provide further development of rights and freedoms of man and citizen of the countries on the democratic principles fixed in documents of the United Nations;

recognizing the international commonly accepted standards in the economic relations and being guided by rules of the GATT/the WTO;

confirming commitment to free development of mutual economic cooperation;

expressing intentions to continue realization of provisions of the Agreement on creation of Economic union by transition to step-by-step forming of the Customs union;

being guided by article 4 of the Agreement on creation of Economic union providing development of complex of the interconnected actions performed according to free standing agreements for each form of integration;

stating achievement of certain results within signed on April 12, 1994 (Moscow) Agreements between the Government of the Russian Federation and the Government of the Republic of Belarus on single procedure for regulation of foreign economic activity;

for the purpose of determination of obligations and the rights of Contracting Parties in step-by-step forming of the Customs union

agreed as follows:

Article 1 of the Purpose and principles of functioning of the Customs union

1. Contracting parties proclaim the following purposes of creation of the Customs union:

- ensuring social and economic progress of the countries with collateral actions by elimination between them the dividing obstacles for free economic interaction between business entities;

- guaranteeing sustainable development of economy, free barter and fair competition;

- strengthening of coordination of economic policy of the countries and ensuring all-round development of the national national economy;

- creation of conditions for forming of the Common Economic Space;

- creation of conditions for active entry of state members of the Customs union into the world market.

2. Contracting parties determine the Customs union as the economic merging of the states which is based on the following principles:

a) availability of single customs area of the State Parties of the Customs union. Forming of single customs area is performed in the way:

- cancellations in trade between the states of Contracting Parties the goods occurring from their territories, customs duties, taxes and fees having equivalent action and also quantitative restrictions;

- establishments and applications in the relations with the third countries of identical trade regime, general customs tariffs and measures of non-tariff regulation of foreign trade;

- forming of the mechanism of relations of the Customs union with the third states and the international organizations on the basis of provisions of the Agreement between the Government of the Russian Federation and the Government of the Republic of Belarus about single procedure for regulation of foreign economic activity of April 12, 1994;

b) availability of the same mechanism of the regulation of economy which is based on the market principles of managing and the unified legislation.

Article 2 Mechanism and stages of creation of the Customs union

1. Contracting parties will perform complex of the interconnected actions for forming of the Customs union including the following obligatory elements:

At the same time cancellation of restrictions in mutual trade will happen on the basis of application of the Agreement between the Government of the Russian Federation and the Government of the Republic of Belarus about single procedure for regulation of foreign economic activity of April 12, 1994 and creation of completely identical systems of regulation of external commercial relations (including tariff and non-tariff regulation), and also establishments of identical trade regime, general customs tariffs and measures of non-tariff regulation concerning the third countries.

1.2. Unification within four months from signature date of this agreement of the foreign trade, customs, monetary, tax and other legislation affecting foreign economic activity, relating, in particular, to:

- to economic conditions of managing on the basis of the market principles providing equal opportunities and guarantees for business entities of the states of Contracting Parties;

- to price policy;

- to currency control and currency exchange control;

- to export control;

- to unfair competition and restrictive business practice;

- intellectual property.

1.3. Forming of the mechanism of relations of the Customs union with the third countries and the international organizations on the basis of delegation of appropriate authority of one of Contracting Parties.

2. Contracting parties will organize work on standardization of the national legal system regulating economic activity. Contracting parties shall provide each other texts of the existing acts, assist in explanation and refining of content of their provisions relating to reforming of national economy.

3. Contracting parties will organize control of law-enforcement practice and ensuring uniformity of implementation of methods:

- establishments of reliable mechanisms of control of non-admission of unauthorized re-export of goods to the third countries;

- implementation of the payment and settlement relations on trading and uncommercial activities on bilateral and multilateral basis;

- applications of single regulation of external commercial relations concerning the third countries;

- rapprochements of economic conditions of managing;

- maintaining customs statistics of foreign trade;

- implementation of reliable customs control on external customs borders of the states of Contracting Parties.

4. Second stage. Consolidation after accomplishment of all actions provided by the first stage, customs areas of the states of Contracting Parties in single customs area, the solution of question of the international legal personality of the Customs union and destiny of the existing international treaties.

5. Contracting parties apply the Bases of customs legislations of the State Parties of the Commonwealth of Independent States approved by Council of Heads of Government of the Commonwealth on December 10, 1994.

6. Contracting parties apply the Single methodology of customs statistics of foreign trade of the State Parties of the Commonwealth of Independent States approved by Council of Heads of Government of the states of the Commonwealth on December 10, 1994.

7. Contracting parties apply the Rules of determination of the country of goods' origin approved by Council of Heads of Government of the states of the Commonwealth on September 24, 1993 with subsequent changes and amendments.

8. Contracting parties apply the Agreement on re-export of goods and approval procedure on re-export signed in Moscow on April 15, 1994.

9. Contracting parties in process of implementation of this agreement can bring by mutual consent amendments in content and terms of accomplishment of separate actions of the stages specified in this Article.

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