Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation E. Nabiullina, Minister of Economic Development and Trade of the Republic of Kazakhstan J. Aitzhanova, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Belarus S. Martynov and New Zealand Minister of Trade T. Grosser agreed that they are ready to start negotiations on a comprehensive and modern free trade zone
For the first time the Customs Union countries (Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan) have entered into full negotiations on a free trade zone. The event itself is an important step in the development of the Customs Union and its integration into the international trading and economic system. This free trade zone will be of particular importance, as it would allow the four countries to be involved in economic integration processes of dynamic and fast-growing Asia-Pacific economic architecture and become its critical element.
Ministers endorsed the joint report prepared on October 5, 2010 by experts of four countries on the free trade area and instructed officials to commence negotiations so as to reach an agreement based on the report by the end of 2011.