Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Armenia unexpectedly moves to join Russia's Customs Union

Armenian President Serzh Sarksian and
Russian President Vladimir Putin - ArmeniaNow
Armenia has decided to join the Russian-led Customs Union, Armenian President Serzh Sarkisian announced September 3, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reported…During talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Sarkisian said Armenia is also prepared to take part in the formation of a Eurasian economic union… While surprising for many, an agreement to join the Customs Union is simply making official the reality of a very close economic relationship…Joining the Union was not necessarily a highly desired move for Armenian President Serzh Sarkisian, but Armenia is a loyal Russian partner…Yerevan had been looking beyond Russia for economic alliances but apparently also wishes to remain inside Moscow’s orbit…The small Caucasus country would prefer not to be entirely dependent on Russia economically but their geography makes this difficult…Armenia has little viable alternative choices in the region, especially since its borders with Azerbaijan and Turkey remain closed over territory disputes.

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