18 March 2018
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Eurasian Economic Union on the move (By Ambassador Yakovenko for RT)

On 31 May 2016, Presidents of Russia, Kazakhstan, Belarus, Armenia and Kyrgyzstan – members of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council of the Eurasian Economic Union – met in Astana to mark the second anniversary of the signing of the EAEU Treaty.
The leaders of the EAEU member-states confirmed their commitment to building a closer relationship with the view of raising each other’s competitiveness and involvement in global economy.
The governments and businesses of the Eurasian Economic Union are now gaining experience in working together. Collaboration within the Union offers an opportunity to consolidate resources and create favorable conditions for joint economic development, while economic integration requires a higher level of mutual macroeconomic coordination.
Within this context great importance is attached to continuous implementation of the main macroeconomic goals set by the EAEU member-states for 2016–2017 and development of new effective mechanisms aimed at harnessing our joint economic potential. This helps the member-countries stabilise their economies and overcome the consequences of negative economic developments. The internal issues of our cooperation have been largely settled and regulated.
This year the EAEU countries will form a common market in the socially important area of drugs and healthcare products. They expect to build a common electricity market by 2019, which will provide the member-states with a $7bn GDP increase. A common hydrocarbons market is to be put in place by 2025, the cumulative effect of which may exceed $1bn for gas and $8bn for the oil industry. We are looking to harmonise legislation regulating construction and design, scientific research and tourism.
The EAEU gives a high priority to liaisons with other countries and important integration associations, including the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation and ASEAN. The Union has a growing network of international contacts. Last year the EAEU signed its first free trade zone agreement with Vietnam. The Eurasian Commission has signed Memoranda of Understanding with the Governments of Mongolia, Peru and Chile, one with Serbia is to follow. Cooperation agreements with South Korea, Ecuador and MERCOSUR are also in the pipeline. We welcome the outline of a legal framework for cooperation with ASEAN member-states Cambodia and Singapore and similar documents (altogether more than twenty) signed with national governments and international organisations. Other countries that have expressed an interest in establishing closer ties with the EAEU include Egypt, India, Iran, and Israel.
At the same time, the EAEU has been looking into the possibility of developing trade and economic ties with the European Union. We believe that cooperation between the two integrations should be aimed at achieving common goals with regard to free movement of goods, labour, services and capital. This should contribute to building a common space from Lisbon to Vladivostok with no dividing lines. In this regard we welcome the recent statement by German Chancellor Angela Merkel in favor of the eventual creation of a common economic zone between Russia and the EU.
It is clear that the EAEU is gradually gaining ground as a modern economic integration project committed to cater for economic developmental needs of its member-countries and networking in a wider international environment.


17.03.2018 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's interview for "Mail on Sunday" (full text)

Q: Bearing in mind that the US, France and Germany have said they agree with Britain that all the evidence suggests the attacks in Salisbury were the responsibility of the Russian state, what credibility can be placed on the denials issued by the Russian Government? A:We don't know if UK presented any evidence to US, France and Germany - highly likely none - but if they did, why not present it through the channels outlined in the Chemical Weapons Convention? Universal legal principle is presumption of innocence, and the burden of proof lies with the British Government. Its record includes the Iraq WMD dossier - you will remember that at some point doubting US and UK claims was considered a wild conspiracy theory. It is not any more.

26.01.2018 - Main foreign policy outcomes of 2017

In 2017, Russian diplomacy addressed multidimensional tasks to ensure national security and create a favourable external environment for our country's progressive development. Russia maintained an independent foreign policy, promoted a unifying agenda, and proposed constructive solutions to international problems and conflicts. It developed mutually beneficial relations with all interested states, and played an active role in the work of the UN, multilateral organisations and forums, including the G20, BRICS, the SCO, the OSCE, and the CSTO. Among other things, Russian policy has sought to prevent the destabilisation of international relations, and this responsible policy has met with broad understanding in the international community.

17.01.2018 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the unveiling of memorial plaque in Sayes Court Park

Dear Mayor, Dear Councillors, Lady Joan, Ladies and gentlemen, It is now 320 years ago that a truly remarkable man set foot in Deptford. As you know, the Russian Tsar Peter, later named the Great, visited Western Europe in 1697—1698 under the nickname of Peter Mikhailov, with his Grand Embassy. He was eager to find out about the latest achievements in science and technology and create new diplomatic alliances. Of course, England couldn’t escape his attention. He mostly studied shipbuilding at the famous Deptford Dockyard, but he also met King William III, and, reportedly, Isaac Newton. Peter’s landlord, the famous John Evelyn, was also a respected scientist – a founder member of the Royal Society.

13.12.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the Presentation of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia by Russia 2018 Local Organising Committee.

Ladies and gentlemen, dear friends, I am pleased to welcome you to the Russian Embassy at the Presentation of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia by Russia 2018 Local Organising Committee. It’s a common knowledge, that football is the most popular game in the world. It is an honour for us to host the 2018 FIFA World Cup for the first time in the history of our country. I believe that those who come to Russia to support their national teams will leave with unforgettable memories.

08.12.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the Roscosmos "Sputnik" exhibition launch at Rossotrudnichestvo

Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the Roscosmos "Sputnik" exhibition launch at Rossotrudnichestvo (7 December 2017)

25.11.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the reception at the Embassy dedicated to Russian Film Week (24 November 2017)

Ladies and gentlemen, Dear friends First of all, I would like to pay tribute to the outstanding Russian opera singer Dmitri Hvorostovsky who passed away this week. In 2015 he gave a concert in this very hall. I am delighted to welcome you at our reception dedicated to the Russian Film Week and the environmental causes it champions. This year their charity partner is World Wide Fund for Nature, which runs many projects in Russia in coordination and with support of the Russian Government. Russia has a unique, fascinating wildlife. A number of this week’s films show the natural beauty of our land and are sure to raise awareness of how fragile this beauty is. We appreciate the WWF effort in Russia and worldwide and call on everybody to become a supporter, especially this year, marked as Year of Ecology in Russia.

20.11.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at the launch of the Russian Film Week (19 November 2017)

Ladies and gentlemen, It is a pleasure for me to be at the opening of the second edition of the Russian Film Week here in London – which this year also spans to Cambridge and Edinburgh.

16.10.2017 - Unpublished letter to the Editor of The Times (sent 12 October)

Sir, If British MPs are free to speak out, wherever they wish, on any issue, why try to block their freedom of speech (“Helping Putin”, 11 October)? If a TV channel wants (and is legally bound) to present different points of view, why slam those who express these views? If the mere act of giving an interview to foreign media amounts to high treason, why does The Times interview Russian politicians without fear? And finally - while MPs critical of Russia are welcome guests on the Russian TV channel RT, does your paper give the same treatment to those critical of the paper’s owner? Konstantin Shlykov Press Secretary of the Embassy of the Russian Federation

25.09.2017 - PRESENTATION by Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk at the Christian Future of Europe Conference 22 September 2017, London

Your Eminences and Your Excellencies, dear Mr. Ambassador, conference organizers and participants, I cordially greet all of those gathered today at the Russian Embassy in London to partake in this conference dedicated to the question of the future of Christianity in Europe. This topic is not only not losing any of its relevance, but is resounding ever anew. Experts believe that today Christianity remains not only the most persecuted religious community on the planet, but is also encountering fresh challenges which touch upon the moral foundations of peoples' lives, their faith and their values. Recent decades have seen a transformation in the religious and ethnic landscape of Europe.

23.09.2017 - Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko's remarks at presentation of the book "The Mystery of Repentance" held at the Russian Embassy

I’m glad to welcome you here to a discussion of two prominent hierarchs of the Russian Orthodox Church and the Church of England, on Christian future of Europe.

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