GUAM Summit Initiates Plans for New Free-Trade Zone
Prime ministers of Georgia, Ukraine, Moldova and Azerbaijan also signed two protocols on the functioning of customs.
Kyiv — GUAM member countries plan to breathe new life into international cooperation as two documents, signed by the parties, aim to simplify customs operations. The first protocol cements the intention to recognize authorized economic bodies, and the second one introduces blockchain technology to check certificates for goods.
“Two documents have been signed; these are protocols of intentions in regards to the functioning of customs agencies in our countries. Enacting these two documents by our customs agencies will significantly simplify trade between us,” Ukraine Prime Minister Oleksiy Honcharuk said.
The documents were signed by the prime ministers of four countries. Since 2005, the GUAM organization for democracy and economic development includes Ukraine, Georgia, Moldova, and Azerbaijan. Representatives of these countries discussed creating new free trade zones and the expansion of the transport corridor next year, to increase trade. In addition, the parties also discussed their political issues.
Georgian prime minister, Georgiy Gakharia, said, “While putting the main emphasis on economics, we were unable to leave out political changes and cooperation between our countries. The main and important challenge our countries face, is territorial integrity.”
In 2019, Ukraine ends its chairmanship in the organization and transfers its rights to Azerbaijan. Therefore, the next meetings will be held in Baku.