The Academic Council of the MFA of Ukraine: Condensed version of the conference, April 21, 2003
Anatoliy M. ZLENKO, Ukraine's Foreign Minister:
"The subject of today's session is the following: 'Trends of Cooperation Development in the Post-Soviet area and the Problem of Advancing National Interests of Ukraine: Political, Economic and Security Dimensions. ' Here is our agenda: First, Serhiy I. Pyrozhkov, Director of the National Institute for Problems of International Security at the National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) is to make a report with Olexandr I. Bozhko, the Head of the First Territorial Department of the Ukrainian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, delivering a supplementary statement. It will be followed, of course, by the exchange of views on the matters. However, before the floor is given to Serhiy Pyrozhkov I would like to say a few words in the above regard. The first half of the year is seen as a peculiar all-time high for international affairs. The war in Iraq, European Conference in Athens and other important events are lifeblood for policy makers and diplomats. Against this background in Ukraine the subject fell back into the shadow that still dominated a month and a half ago, namely, the new forms of interaction of the post-Soviet countries. The theme characterized by being of the so- called "long-playing" nature, it demands, however, a systematic and broad approach. For this reason, we decided to put it for today's discussion since presently it attracted attention due to the initiative concerning creation of the Integrated Economic Space, IES, and correspondent declaration of the four presidents on the issue.
"Naturally, one cannot bring to a single point all complex issues in the FSU area. The scene is open for this country both by new challenges, and new political plans. The GUUAM, Russia-Belarus Union, Eurasian Economic Union, and, again, and the Integrated Economic Space we have to analyze and decide for ourselves where there exists a chance for Ukraine, and where a possible trap is in store. Since this requires intensive diplomatic
activity, no one should be surprised by certain our energetic actions in the FSU space. What is implied is the chair that this country's president came into at the Council of the CIS's Heads States. Ukraine also heads the Council of the CIS's Foreign Ministers. We deem it as a chance to affect to formation of policies and assert out priorities within the CIS frames. The said priorities themselves remain unchanged, which are primarily solving of the economic issues. Here we put at the forefront the creation of a full-fledged free trade area.
"The President has just returned after visiting four CIS countries of the Central Asia. Among the goal of the visit were, firstly, our interests within the frames of the CIS, and, secondly, the preparation for the CIS Summit to be held early this fall. My guess is that our arguments multiplied by the present status of this country's President as the CIS Head may bring certain positive results. Naturally, when speaking about the post- Soviet space the most attention is being drawn to Russia as the biggest our neighbor and partner, but of the sort that surely intentional to involve Ukraine in its own orbit. Hence, doubts are naturally raised as to the realization of the idea to create Integrated Economic Space. Personally, I apprehend these doubts, although do not share them at this stage completely. I have already expressed my view on the subject and am ready to reiterate the idea that the Integrated Economic Space is not an end in itself for us, but rather a tool that happened to be in our hands. Figuratively speaking, this space in our understanding is as if a wall of a new building, while for Russia it is perhaps only the planking of the first or a new floor. There is no doubt that prolonged and difficult negotiations are impending to look for and find compromise. The next meeting is to occur in Minsk, May 15. It is to be very important if not a decisive one. I would like to assure you, my esteemed colleagues, the compromise will not be made at the expense of depriving Ukraine of the European perspectives. This is, so to speak, some of the considerations that, I hope, may be added to the report, the supplementary statement, or be part of the exchange of views on this issue.
Trends of Cooperation Development in the Post-Soviet Area and the Problem of Advancing National Interests of Ukraine: Security, Political and Economic Dimensions
"Starting from the first days of Ukraine gaining independence up to the present the issues of multilateral and bilateral cooperation with other countries, that is, the FSU republics, and, primarily, the undisputed leader of the post-Soviet area-the Russian Federation, concern security. That is, the majority of Ukrainian experts treat these matters as belonging to the sphere of security viewing them as applied to the national interests such as:
* securing the sovereignty of state;
* integrating into the European and World Communities;
* creating all-sufficient market economy; and,
* developing democratic
institutions that would provide for human rights and freedoms.
"Largely, the above coincides with approaches of the leading Western experts that carefully watch the post-Soviet developments.
"At the same time, connected to processes after 9/11 new possibilities have opened for Ukraine and new challenges need correspondent response and, in some cases, action as well.
"Quite urgent issue of the agenda for the Ukrainian experts becomes the selective desecuritization of the matters of Ukrainian participation in certain integrating projects in the post-Soviet area initiated by Russia. What this country needs is the answer to the following questions: Which contradictions in Kyiv's relations with Moscow could be brought out from the sphere of national security? Which 'threats' could be transformed to 'problems' that in contrast to the former do not impose the requirement on the President or Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine extraordinary actions be taken and could be solved through ordinary diplomatic means?
1. Security Dimension of the National Interests of Ukraine In the Post-Soviet Area
"The challenge of the global terrorism has put on the agenda of cooperation between the FSU countries new tasks that concern formation of the regional system of security and stability. The one is to be directed at creating favorable conditions for cooperation by ensuring 'soft' security not only for some CIS members, but also for subregional alignments, in particular, such as GUUAM and Eurasian Economic Union.
"It is worth noting that lately the most applicable became classification of security distributed between 'soft' and 'hard' (or power) components in the part that deals with national and international security. The end of the cold war era and disappearance of confrontation of blocs transferred the priorities in the sphere of security to its 'soft' component ensuring human rights and freedoms, especially in the context of ethnic conflicts.
"It is understood that the 'power' component of security was always present, especially in such regions as the Balkans and Caucasus. However, overall cooperation of the world community and political elite of the FSU states at the end of the last century remained exactly in the plane of 'soft' security, that is, ensuring of social and political rights of citizens (one of language including). The 9/11 events intensified the power component of security. Military operation against the Taliban regime in Afghanistan and Saddam Hussein in Iraq somewhat later only reinforced the tendency. In Ukraine's interaction with countries of the post-Soviet terrain within the sphere of security, one may distinguish global, regional, subregional, and bilateral dimensions.
"Within the global dimension, while reacting to the call of time Ukraine and other countries of the post-Soviet area backed the efforts of the international community in fighting terrorism. The CIS members, Ukraine including, have advanced a series of initiatives within the frames of the
antiterrorist coalition, while some of the countries at the request of its initiators even granted their air space and military bases.
"Another line of joint participation of the FSU countries to support antiterrorist operations became adherence to international agreements on detection, informing of, and handing over persons being party to terrorist groups and accused of crimes against humanity. The government structures of the member-countries also contribute financially counteracting terrorism (informing about holdings, deposits, and accounts with banks, etc.). At the level of law-enforcing departments the CIS region countries are being actively involved into fighting drug trafficking, unauthorized arms trade, and so on.
"In general, to work out common ground within the global dimension, the countries of the post-Soviet area have the well-formulated basis of international law. Concerning a series of world problems in the sphere of security their positions coincide in view of the common ground of the international law they pledged to abide to being assignees of the international legal conception of the FSU.
"Within the regional dimension, Ukraine, Azerbaijan, and Georgia are active participants of the European and Euro Atlantic integration. Russia plays separate role in these processes. At the present stage, the positive aspect of common actions is affected by principles and norms of documents adopted at the level of the OSCE and the Council of Europe.
"Some FSU countries take part in OSCE commissions, and act as observers and neutral sides in settling international conflicts, thus bearing responsibility for preserving conflict-free zone within the CIS.
"All FSU countries stand up firmly in applying measures of preventive diplomacy, observing human rights, etc. Specifically, both Ukraine and Russia stand as guarantors in illegal migration control. It is worthy of note that Ukraine, which together with Belarus and Moldova acquire the status of the EU neighbors, is to carry a very great load in this status in comparison with other CIS countries.
"At the same time, Ukraine assumes that one of the most important guarantees of its sovereign development is formation and maintenance of the collective security system in the European region. In particular, in the situation of dialog of the countries of the Western Europe unfolding with Russia, Ukraine is to claim its full participation in it in matters that concern the countries national interests.
"As participant to subregional links, together with other countries of the post-Soviet area Ukraine has worked out principles of safe coexistence and inviolability of frontiers as part of the CIS. Within this organization, Ukraine actively cooperates with other members of this alliance in the sphere of fighting international terrorism affected through the Coordination Bureau on organized crime and other serious offence on the territory of CIS members, as well as the CIS Antiterrorist Center. Ukraine participates as observer at the Headquarter for Coordination of Military Cooperation of the CIS members.
"The next level of cooperation of the countries of the post-Soviet area in the sphere of security is bilateral agreements
that cover military-political and security issues. Along with that, numerous other principal questions unsolved greatly hinder the process of Ukraine's integration into European EuroAtlantic communities. Situation is complicated, in particular, by the presence of the RF in Sevastopol and common air-defense area.
"There are three prominent institutions in the post-Soviet area, in which activities security remains the principal component. These are the CIS (or its military-political constituent), the Collective Security Treaty (soon to become the Collective Security Treaty Organization), and GUUAM. In addition, CIS members also take part in the activities of the security structures that comprise other countries (e. g., Shanghai Organization of Cooperation, etc.).
"The principal integration project in the sphere of security in the post-Soviet area is the Collective Security Treaty Organization, CSTO. As an observer, Ukraine is a participant in the Committee of Secretaries of Security Councils of the CSTO. In view of Euro Atlantic choice by Ukraine it is clear that joining this organization by the country in impossible in principle.
"It should be noted that Ukraine finding itself between NATO and countries that signed the Collective Security Treaty suggested an idea to form an area of stability and security in Central and Eastern Europe. The initiative may be seen as regional contribution into the issue of creating all-European security. The issue in question is not formation of a new military bloc or sanitary barrier; on the contrary, the matter concerns filling the vacuum of the 'soft' security produced in the region after disbanding of the Warsaw Pact and disintegration of the USSR.
"The fundamental idea of such stability and security zone is in creating effective mechanism of maintaining peace in the region, overcoming once and for all the split of Europe, and formation of an atmosphere of openness, trust, and security.
"The latest events connected with a glimpse of coolness in relations of the USA and Great Britain on the one hand, and France, Germany and the Russian Federation on the other, may provide a chance for Ukraine to play more active role in the development of cooperation in security issues with countries of 'new' Europe. This would contribute to realization of the European integration course of this country, as well as to get it a position of another center of attraction after the Kremlin in shaping a new security edifice in the post-Soviet area.
2. Economic Dimension of Integration in the Post-Soviet Area
"To a certain extent the arrival of the countries of the post-Soviet region to the world economic frame of reference has caused, firstly, sharp increase of interest of the developed countries to the subjects of international law that are rich in energy resources., and, secondly, intensification of 'competition' between CIS members for a deserving place in the international allocation of tasks.
"It is worth noting that as of today, the existing oil and natural gas transporting systems, being the most important
constituents of the fuel and energy complex, quite positively affect the improvement of economic situation in the countries of the post-Soviet area. This concerns the ones that extract and export hydrocarbon resources, as well as those providing services in transporting them to the third parties.
"Substantial portion of main pipelines of the CIS members had been constructed in the USSR. It was then that the biggest oil and gas were discovered and formed the most powerful and unique as to the length system in Europe of main pipelines to transport natural gas, oil and their end products. Created predominantly during '60 to '80 of the last century, the trunk pipelines system of conduits with overall length of 81 thousand km for gas and 174 thousand km for oil was oriented at providing energy resources both for the internal consumer and consumers in the countries in Eastern and Western Europe, Balkans and Turkey. It served as basis of mutually beneficial cooperation with countries adjacent to the southern borders of the USSR.
"Disintegration of the Soviet Union caused the emergence of a series of new players on the world markets of energy resources. Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan are in possession of considerable reserves of oil and gas and are eager to carve their own niche on the market of hydrocarbons. Belarus, Georgia, Armenia and, of course, Ukraine located favorably geographically are bent on using their transit potential as much as possible by providing transport services to owners and big consumers of the hydrocarbon stuff.
"Russia with a unique source of raw materials comprised of more that 2,600 oil and gas fields and inherited from the FSU traditional links for export supply of energy to the European countries is one of the biggest suppliers on the world energy market. The buildup of Russian extraction and export is caused by the growing demand of the European countries. Thus, the expected increase of demand for imported natural gas in countries of Western Europe to reach from 205 to 225 billion cubic meters in 2010, and from 270 to 300 billion cubic meters in 2020 give grounds to also expect further increase of its export by Russia.
"Today, almost 90% of exported Russian gas run through the territory of Ukraine providing for the quarter of this energy resource consumed in countries of Eastern and Western Europe.
"The development of the state became a new impetus to look for the new partners and build fresh schemes in the external economic activity including the oil and gas sphere. The break-up of the established cooperation links turned, as a rule, with losses for the economies of the post-Soviet countries. The relations in the sphere of oil and gas of the CIS countries that touched on the subject of diversification both of supply sources and transportation routes of energy resources, as well as made them the basis of energy strategy of their own, were no exception.
"The latest intergovernmental projects may be ranked as follows:
* The Caspian Pipeline (Russia and Kazakhstan);
* The "Blue Flow" pipeline (the RF and Georgia); and
* Yamal-to-Europe pipeline (the RF, Belarus, and Ukraine).
"Largely, the post-Soviet countries are doomed for prolonged cooperation in the energy transit sphere abundant with great potential of resources.
"New joint efforts are needed both in the political and practical directions to make this intergovernmental cooperation mutually beneficial also in the aspect of choice of the European integration.
"The agreements achieved within the CIS allowed provision of uninterrupted functioning of rail, air, sea and river transport. However, the time that passed after the collapse of the Soviet system demonstrated contradictions at hand still grounded during creation of the CIS, the 'form of civilized separation' of the former Soviet republics. It is connected mainly with the fact that the joint economic interests within the frames of the Community dwelled too far at the outskirts of the strategic goals of the new independent states. During more than eleven years of the CIS in existence such approach led to situation that may be characterize by the following four circumstances:
"1. The CIS is a group of countries located in differing geographic conditions, dissimilarly provided with natural resources, noticeably varying as to the level of economic development, levels of market infrastructure, socioeconomic way of life, and even world outlook. Such differences in starting conditions had caused the tendency to choose different models of reformation of national economies and, hence, constructing different models of economy. As time goes on, the latter are becoming even less compatible;
"2. The degree and rates of market transformations in the countries of the Commonwealth fail to coincide, thus causing series of separate adjustments and approvals in the course of endless negotiations between countries different by their economic status;
"3. In each of the post-Soviet country market interest of its own are forming making them along with developing mutual relations to look for lucrative partners outside the CIS (relations with the leading countries of the West being the priority) and to group in accord to interests into local associations;
"4. The overall instability of social, economic and political situation in the countries of the Commonwealth leaves in doubt the possibility to plan the long-term development of relations among its participants. The glaring example is the victory of the Left in Moldova that to an extent rectified the strategy of the country's participation in the integration projects in the post-Soviet area.
"The said above defines two groups of factors, of which one favors and the other hinders the advance of integration of the national economies of the CIS countries.
"The factors favoring subregional economic integration are:
* the interest in preserving their share of the Community market, since on account of its non-competitiveness the full-blown entering of the Western markets is complicated;
* the availability of transport communication and trunk lines that defines the interdependency of the CIS countries for entering by them of the world markets;
* the dependency on supply from the neighboring countries of strategic raw materials (e. g., energy carriers and colored metals), as well as some foodstuffs;
* the existing humanitarian instruments, that is, certain commonness of culture and historical fate contribute to the development of partnership relations between economic elite of the Commonwealth's countries.
* The factors hindering subregional economic integration are:
* the priority of developing relations with the advanced countries of the West. Pressure of the leading world powers to include these or other CIS countries to the sphere of their influence is noticeable;
* the differences in economic models that are being pursued on the CIS terrain complicate interaction of the national economies. The recent closure by Uzbekistan of the border with the neighboring Kazakhstan, which advanced much further on the road of economic reforms. Such decision was intended to stop capital outflow to Kazakhstan from Uzbekistan where protective fixed prices were introduce for a range of goods;
* the feeble economic interest in the CIS partners and low trust for them. Opening of customs borders may lead to outflow of capital, energy resources, etc. Thus, the Russian Federation is rather afraid of re-export by other CIS countries of oil, gas, and strategic metals;
* the competitive activity launched among the CIS countries in pursuit of markets;
* the world instability orienting the countries at short-term economic projects instead of long-term ones, thus leaving strategic perspective ignored, let alone the priorities of stable development;
* the dependence on raw resources both of donors and users presenting a peculiar obstacle on the way of economic integration of the CIS participant nations. It is not to the advantage of the countries with a bulk of their export being raw resources to integrate among themselves.
"From this follow the prerequisites for autonomous entering the world market of these or other post-Soviet countries. That is why the integration processes that mainly correspond to the national interests of new independent states gain fresh impetus. Until the mid '90s the CIS countries were developing exclusively under the Soviet 'ideology' of reintegration of the single complex of national economy relying of their structural capabilities. However, dissatisfaction with the Russian domination and low efficiency of the Commonwealth's bodies had further led to creation of separate subregional integration conglomerates based on factors of geographic proximity, coincident vitally important problems and cultural links.
In the upshot, in the post-Soviet area a multi-layer economic integrating system has originated which rate of development is of discordant nature. Composed in general outline on the CIS12-format,
the following it includes in various configurations:
* the Union Power (alliance of the RF and Belarus);
* Eurasian Economic Interaction - the former Customs Union (that is, the RF, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrghyztan, and Tajikistan);
* GUUAM-Georgia, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan, and Moldova; and
* Organization of Central Asian Cooperation--Kazakhstan, Kyrghystan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan.
"The search for fresh configurations to launch the machinery of economic integration within the CIS12 at the start of 2003 brought up the subject for consideration of creating the Integrated Economic Space with the Organization of Regional Integration, or ORI, being built within its frames.
"Structuring the ORI demands supranational organ to regulate external economic activity be available. Hence, the new organization should to have become a highly developed integrating structure. Four countries have come to an agreement concerning concerted efforts towards joining the WTO.
"Concurrently, publications appeared in the American press at the start of April stressing the need to gear the negotiation process related to the RF joining the WTO to reaching compromise on issues of Iraq, Iran, and the North Korea. Worsening of Russia-American relations on the Iraq issue may lessen the intensity of Russia's negotiations on the WTO. In the context, it is reasonable for Ukraine to outstep the negotiation process with the theses of its own advance towards the WTO synchronized with Russia. At the background of the issue politicized in Russia and the USA laying terms as to Russia's full membership in the Organization, Ukraine has all the chances to independently speed up its WTO entry.
"At the same time, it would be inconsiderate to contrast the strategic goals of Ukraine's European integration and forming the ORI. The European integration of Ukraine is a long-term strategic project which duration may last more that a decade. On this road, Ukraine should solve a wide complex of tasks that go too far outside pure surmounting of legislative collisions and adapting the Ukrainian legislation to the EU requirements.
"Coordination of efforts within the frames of IES may create additional incentives and financial sources to stir up economic growth and effecting qualitative structural reconstruction that would draw the country to the requirement of the EU in the final account.
"Ukraine must insist on forming the IES according to the Copenhagen criteria. It would allow the ORI members either together or separately to join the EU in future and considerably intensify the processes of modernizing the national economies to meet European standards.
"Such a model of "broad European integration" by combining in the medium-term perspective the integration efforts of the EU and ORI, would correspond to the present-day demands of the integrating economic processes. If the post-Soviet
countries, primarily the above 'foursome', are, indeed, pressing to approach the civilized world, they have to blend in into the European process of integration.
3. Aggravation of Political Situation In the Post-Soviet Area
"Presently, the principle political players in this region are, undoubtedly, the Russian Federation, and the United States of America. In addition, at the east of the FSU China is starting to play increasingly greater role through the Shanghai Organization of Cooperation. It was precisely the political rapprochement of the USA and the RF during 2001 to 2002, and the cooling of the Russia-American relations at the start of 2003 that substantially define the nature and high dynamics of development of cooperation in the post-Soviet area.
"Firstly, at the start the Bush administration's attention towards the post-Soviet area (the so-called Russian "close abroad" ) was not accompanied by the urge to limit Moscow's inherent political domination similar to that of President Clinton. There was another goal in mind: gaining the beachhead to fight Muslim extremism and, in perspective, to occupy better positions in rivalry with China. The National Security Strategy of the United States of America of 2002 mentioned the post-Soviet area in passing in connection "that a prosperous and stable neighborhood will reinforce Russia's growing commitment to integration to the Euro-Atlantic community. "
"Secondly, the Bush administration's approach to Russia is less ideologized than the one under President Clinton. For Democrats it was primarily the country in transition from communism to democracy and market economy. Republicans rejected the approach. At the end of 2000, the closely connected with the Republican Party circles Nixon Center was the first think tank of America that proposed the new administration to to give up the transition concept as the light to view Russia. Republicans were considerably less preoccupied with the process of democratization in Russia, which for them was first and foremost a partner in the sphere of security. Such a niche happened to be quite comfortable for the Kremlin. One should note, however, that the 'transition concept' remains the primary tool for Washington to assess the other post-Soviet countries, including Ukraine.
"Thirdly, the Russian president admitted that the classes of weight of the USA and Russia were different. The matter is not so much in the size of economic and military potentials as in the fact that the United States is the global power keeping its presence everywhere and participating in every deal. Moscow, meanwhile, playing within the present-day system of international relations a much smaller role, continuously looks for compromise with Washington in matters of redistribution of the range of influence in the post-Soviet area.
"At the same time, the US military operation to topple the Saddam Hussein regime made the post-Soviet countries publicly clarify themselves in relation of Russia as 'the best friend' in the CIS, as well as the USA as the world leader. Uzbekistan (even long before the military operation started) expressed its unconditional support to the USA. Tashkent remains the 'agent'
of American influence in the Central Asian region and hopes to preserve this its status within the medium-term perspective.
"Certain doubts expressed Kazakhstan as to the expediency to remain within the structures of CSTO. In view of problems that exist in Kazakhstan-American relations (that is, corruption scandals, etc.) the leadership of Kazakhstan shows more interest towards NATO and political rapprochement with the USA.
"The leaderships of Tadjikistan, Turkmenistan, and Kyrghizia also feel pressure from the USA. Washington is building up military presence at the antiterrorist coalition airbase in Hansi of Kyrghisia, and Georgian-American negotiations have linen up as to the military-political cooperation. The Georgian parliament ratified on March 21, 2003, the Treaty on cooperation between Georgia and the United States in military sphere. Under the treaty, the American side has the right to occupy territories and installations in Georgia for the American civilian and military personnel, ground, sea and airborne transport and special facilities. The leadership of Georgia hopes that in the upshot the US support may turn assistance from the American side during final settlement of conflict in Abkhasia. Through Tbilisi, the United States and Turkey are to create a zone of stability in Caucasia that will substantially limit Russia's interest in the region.
"Similar situation is observed in Azerbaijan that also backed the USA in military campaign against Iraq. This gives grounds to predict possible intensification of the US pressure brought on those participating in settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. Lately, Azerbaijan took a firm stand towards Karabakh evidencing certain American guarantees in this matter. Baku also intends to speed up negotiations with NATO concerning its full membership in the organization.
"The US has substantially increased pressure on the leadership of Belarus. At the end of March 2003, the US Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe (the Helsinki Commission) introduced to the Senate and House of Representatives the draft law contributing to democratic development in Belarus that stipulated funding for opposition parties, mass media, non-governmental organizations, etc. The pressure put on Belarus was to have a mediate effect on the RF too. It is clear that relation of alliance between Moscow and Minsk became the object of a new game of the USA and EU of the give-and-take type. Thus, at the start of April the ban was lifted on the leadership of Belarus entry to the EU countries.
"Hence, the US policy today is directed at ultimate disintegration of intergovernmental bilateral and multilateral relations in the post-Soviet area that are coordinated under the aegis of Russia. Before long, Washington will make attempts to exert pressure on the RF through CIS countries by creating instability areas around Russia and reinforcing regional associations independent of Moscow.
"Under such conditions, all chances are the Kremlin will make efforts to preserve and consolidate positions of its own. The said is to effected through intensification of coordination of multilateral cooperation within the CIS, advancement of the renewed integration projects on the Eurasian Economic Union and CSTO, as
well as through adopting the Concept of Forming Integrated Economic Space.
"The potentials connected to forming Integrated Economic Space are, however, attractive for Ukraine. Creating of the ORI may be regarded in the light of Ukraine's integration into the EU and NATO structures in the context of "wide European integration".
"By using favorable political environment, there is a chance for Ukraine to realize the most advantageous scenario of Integrated Economic Space (that is, closeness to the European standards, EU computability, etc.).
"Hence, the objective realities have outlined before this country - the responsible mission to make the most of the chance presented as to strengthening Ukraine's positions in the regional dimension."
April 16, 2003
The National Institute of International Security Problems
Serhiy I. Pyrozhkov, Director of the National Ins-titute of International Security Problems with the National Security and Defense Council, NSDC:
"The subject under discussion was initially considered at the Institute with the data for study sent to all members of the Council. This somewhat simplifies my task since the need is eliminated for laying out in full the basic theses of it. For this reason, I will make some commentaries that, in my opinion, are of principal character and may help outline the present state of cooperation development in the post-Soviet area in the three of its constituents, that is, the spheres of security, economic and political interaction. Each of the spheres mentioned has positive and negative sides that should be taken into account when taking long-term and strategic decisions. I am agreeable with the Minister that our cooperation within the CIS must not overshadow the strategic goal of European and Euro-Atlantic integration. Nevertheless, the need of cooperation with the CIS countries makes us work out the optimal model of such cooperation for the sake of keeping our interests green, and even use it sometimes to speed up the achievement of the strategic goal-Euro-Atlantic and European integration.
"In the security sphere we may distinguish four main levels, so to speak, namely, global, regional, subregional, and bilateral. If on the global level there is consensus with the post-Soviet countries as to the backing of the world community efforts to fight international terrorism, at regional level certain differences still exist since different models of integration guide these countries. What I imply is the following. Ukraine, Azerbaijan, and Georgia are active participants of the European and Euro- Atlantic integration with special role in these processes performed by Russia and positive effect at the present stage of joint actions being made for by the norms of the OSCE and Council of Europe documents. The post-Soviet countries participate vigorously in the activity of the OSCE commissions, work as observers and third parties during settlement of international conflicts, that is, they bear responsibility for preserving conflict free space within the CIS. All countries in the
post-Soviet area stand for the use of preventive diplomacy, observing human rights, etc. In particular, Ukraine and Russia are guarantors of preventing illegal migration to Europe. Worth noting the fact that Ukraine together with Belarus and Moldova, having acquired the status of the EU neighbors, are to bear substantial load in comparison with other CIS countries. In other words, the status of neighbors makes up work more closely with the European Union in contrast to the countries that do not have it. I believe that in this respect we are to proceed from the notion that one of the strongest guarantees of this country's sovereign development is the formation and maintenance of the system of collective security in the European region.
"Another notch of cooperation of the post-Soviet countries in the sphere of security is bilateral agreements involving military-political and security problems. At the same time, numerous principal issues of bilateral relations unsolved considerably slow down the process of integration into the European and Euro-Atlantic community. The situation is complicated by the military presence of the Russian Federation on our territory and free space of air defense available. Three leading institutions-the CIS, CST (the Collective Security Treaty), and GUUAM-exist in the post-Soviet area. In addition, the CIS member-countries are party to the security structures that comprise other nations, for instance, Shanghai Organization of Cooperation. The principle integration project in the sphere of security in the post-Soviet area is the CST, or the Collective Security Treaty. As observer, Ukraine takes part in the Committee of the Security Council Secretaries and other structures, but it is clear that joining of the CST is impossible in principle for Ukraine because of its Euro-Atlantic choice. One should note that Ukraine, finding itself between NATO and countries that signed the Collective Security Treaty, initiated to form an area of security and stability in Eastern and Central Europe. This initiative may be seen as its regional contribution to the issue of creating the all-European security system.
"The principle idea of such an area was the making up of efficient mechanism to maintain regional peace, to finally overcome the split of Europe and to form the atmosphere of openness, trust, and security. The recent events connected with certain cooling of relations of the Unites States and Great Britain on the one hand, and France, Germany and the Russian Federation on the other, are supposed to give our country a chance to play more active role in the development of cooperation in the field of security with countries of new Europe. The one may contribute to the realization by this country of its course for European integration, as well as win a place for it in the structure of the new security system on the European continent.
"Hence, while summarizing this security dimension, it is important to emphasize that no apparent contradictions exist at the global level in fighting threats defined today as ones constituting menace to the present-day world community: international terrorism, spread of weapons of mass destruction, illegal migration, drug trafficking, etc. On all of these issues, we are to actively cooperate with the CIS members at the level of horizontal interaction of the concrete structures fighting these threats. Highly important in
Ukraine's cooperation with the CIS countries is the economic dimension. Here, without doubt, positive and negative points are present. The collapse of the Soviet Union introduced new players to the world markets of, for instance, energy resources. While Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan in possession of considerable reserves of oil and gas are eager to fill their niche on the market of hydrocarbons, Belarus, Georgia, Armenia, as well as Ukraine, with their advantageous geographical location are seeking to make the best out of their transit potential and services provision to the owners and large consumers of hydrocarbon stuff. Therefore, the issue of cooperation lies predominantly in the plane of using this country's transit capabilities primarily in power engineering and moving energy carriers from Asia to Europe.
"We have a developed transport infrastructure, which resource also may be used. The CIS is special group of countries that are located in different geographic and provided unequally with natural resources. They distinctly vary with the level of economic development, maturity of market infrastructure, social and cultural way of life, and even with the world outlook. Such discrepancy inn the starting conditions provoked inclination of the CIS countries to choose unlike models of reforming national economies and to shape dissimilar integration. However, each post-Soviet country pursues its own market interests looking for good business partners outside the CIS and making up local subregional associations. The said entails both certain positive and negative factors that are either contribute to or hinder integration within the economic space of the CIS countries. Among the factors that contribute to subregional economic integration one may distinguish the following: concern over preserving markets for own produce, availability of transport communication and lines, dependence on supply of strategic raw materials and food from other countries, humanitarian instruments, etc.
"Commonalties of cultural belonging and historical fates favor development of partnership among economic elite of the community countries. Nevertheless, factors exist hindering subregional economic integration. Among them are the priority of relations with the developed countries of the West; discrepancies in economic models being pursuit throughout the CIS area thus complicating interaction of national economic systems; poor economic motivation and mistrust towards their CIS partners; customs borders opened capable to slow down transfer of capital and transport of energy resources. Competition among the CIS countries for markets as well as stability in the world drive the countries to be oriented at short-term economic projects instead of long-term ones. For this reason strategic perspective, let alone priorities of stable development, are left unheeded. In addition, the raw materials dependency both of providers and customers makes up a hurdle on the road of economic integration of the CIS countries. Thence the autonomous entry of the world market by these or other post-Soviet countries, and that is why integration processes that meet the national interests of independent states gain new momentum. If before the mid-90s the CIS countries were developing exclusively under the Soviet ideology a single national economy complex, that is, reintegration leaning on
their structural capabilities, realization grows today of the fact that more profound integration models of creating Integrated Economic Space need to be developed. As a result of integration processes advancing at various speed several integration groups have formed within the CIS, namely: the Union Power (alliance formed by Russia and Belarus), Eurasian Economic Cooperation, GUUAM, and Organization of Central Asian Cooperation. Search for new configurations of economic integration actualized earlier this year the formation of Integrated Economic Space and regional integration within its frames. The latter provided for supranational organ regulating external trade to be available.
"Hence, the new organization is to become a developed integrating structure with four countries-Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine-coordinating actions as to their joining the World Trade Organization. At the same time, publication at the start of April appeared in the American press requesting binding negotiations on the Russian Federation joining the WTO with reaching compromise on the issues of Iraq, Iran, and the North Korea. Deterioration of Russian-American relations on Iraq issue may cause slowing Russia's negotiations on WTO. In this context, it is deemed reasonable to bring the thesis on synchronization of this country's advance to the WTO with Russia outside the negotiation process. At the background of the issue politicizing in Russia and the USA making terms as to gaining full WTO membership by the Russian Federation, Ukraine is offered a chance to speed up its unattached WTO entry.
"At the same time, in my opinion, it would be wrong to counterpoise the strategic goals of Ukraine's European integration and formation of the Integrated Economic Space. Economic integration of Ukraine is a long-term strategic project, which achievement may take more that a decade with Ukraine on this road to solve a wide complex of tasks that goes beyond surmounting purely legal collisions and adaptation of the Ukrainian legislation to what is required by the EU. Coordination of efforts within the frames of the Integrated Economic Space may create additional incentive and financial sources to stimulate economic growth and affect qualitative structural reconstruction of the national economy to draw us closer to the requirements of the European Union. Ukraine may insist on the Integrated Economic Space be formed in accord with the Copenhagen criteria. This would allow the members of the Organization of Regional Integration to join in future the European Union either together or separately, and substantially accelerate modernizing national economies in accord with the European standards. In my view, only this model of broad European integration, which in the medium-term perspective combines integration efforts of the European Union and the issue of constructing Integrated Economic Space, would correspond to the present-day demands of integration economic processes. If the post- Soviet countries, especially "the big foursome", are indeed eager to come close to the civilized nations, they have to fit in the European integration process.
"I will not touch upon the issue of political constituent of our cooperation, and will mention only that cooperation in political sphere depends not only on bilateral ties or subregional groupings in the post-Soviet
area. It becomes more evident that active role here is played by the United States of America and the Russian Federation, and their intercourse should be employed by Ukraine to advance its national interests as far as possible. In this connection, we have wide chances to stir up our efforts in the spheres of cooperation within the frames of GUUAM and interaction with NATO countries and nations of Eastern and Central Europe; in strengthening influence to regulate TransDnister conflict, mediate in the Caucasus, and in pressing for Ukraine's WTO entry. The same is true concerning making vigorous use of the US support for the ENTC project to deepen the Ukrainian- American cooperation, removing gulf between Ukraine and the Russian Federation on the issue of forming Integrated Economic Space, as well as reinforcing Ukraine's "gas consortium" position. . Negotiation process with the EU also needs intensification on the issue of optimization of the transportation routes for Caspian oil and the use of the Odesa-Brody pipeline. "
Olexandr BOZHKO, Chief of the First Territorial Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine:
"Considering the First Territorial Department directly deals with the CIS problems, Russia including, I would like to dwell in greater detail on the tendencies of cooperation development in the structure mentioned. If we look at the Commonwealth of Independent States as it appeared at the close of the last and beginning of this year, the following picture can be observed. As before, low efficiency and the lack of efficacious machinery to realize multilateral treaties characterize the CIS. An attempt was make last year to radically restructure the CIS even up to liquidation of the Moscow branch of its Executive Committee. All proposals seemingly directed at improving and reducing the Commonwealth's structures indicated the intention of the Eurasian Economic Community, EurAsEC, which was mentioned here, to take over the CIS economic functions, thus destroying the free-trade area in the 12-member format. Simultaneously, deliberations of the Russian Federation intensified as to drawing Ukraine into the EurAsEC. This year, as the CIS leader, the Russian Federation kept holding its ground on intensifying the security trend of cooperation in political sphere by taking the occasion of 9/11. The process of creating so-called coordination structures, primarily in educational and informational spheres is still going on within the Commonwealth, while it is a small secret for us that exactly the information sphere is being brought to the forefront globally.
"In my view, the situation within the Commonwealth is somewhat remindful of the ideological and institutional crisis of 1997 that had been partially overcome only at the intergovernmental forum of 1999 by dint of radically reforming the CIS structures and functions. However, in our estimation, negatively from the point of view of Ukraine's interests the growing tendency has effected of emasculation within the Commonwealth of just the economic component through its transfer to the EurAsEC. With the military-political sphere being simultaneously handed over to the Collective Security Treaty Organization, the CIS in its present shape has no place
alongside these organizations. The need to search for new approaches for the future of CIS, its new structure, and functions hangs over. We deem the contradictions between the Russian Federation's desire to play the leading role in the post-Soviet area in every sphere and orientation of other CIS member-countries to develop equitable cooperation and pursue foreign policy of one's own to be at the core of the permanent crisis of the Association. For this reason, the crisis would be hard to overcome in the nearest future, while the priority tactical mission of Ukraine within the CIS, in our opinion, was and is to be counteracting the negative tendencies in the crisis development by the way of taking and coordinating actions by the situational blocking majority of the member-countries, primarily, GUUAM, Turkmenistan, and, possibly, separate member-countries of the Collective Security Treaty and EurAsEC. Counteracting said negative trends happened to be the activities' priority of our Ministry of Foreign Affairs, MFA, in relation to the Commonwealth last year. Consistent assertion of principal stand of Ukraine in relation to joining the EurAsEC, coordination of the external political activity, creation of the so-called 'common spaces', etc. allowed, in particular, to preserve the CIS structure in the form acceptable for us. As we see it, in 2003 the priority of the MFA within the CIS frames is to remain counteracting negative trends mentioned and preservation of the functionally and structurally acceptable Commonwealth with special stress on creating free-trade area in the 12-member format.
"I would like to dwell briefly on the regionalization tendency, being one of the leading displayed in the post-Soviet area. Characteristic for the year past became the continued intensification of this process with regional formations, either within the CIS or out of it, developing increasingly in different centrifugal directions. To me, such tendencies are evidence of serious contradictions and lack of common interest, and, hence, inability to solve efficiently the urgent problems of cooperation, primarily in economic sphere of 12-member format. Due to the activity of regional associations, the CIS, in fact, is turning into a multilevel structure with different participation degree and integration in scale and depth of separate countries. The most close formation is the Union of Belarus and Russia declared to be the core of Commonwealth, with the next level being the EurAsEC followed by the Organization of Central Asian Cooperation and GUUAM, and, finally, the CIS proper. Each of these formations is not without problems and contradictions that additionally complicate relations within the frames of the Commonwealth.
"Last year, relations between Belarus and Russia within the frames of their union suffered substantial changes. Moreover, differences in views as to further development of the association that showed explicitly even called into question its existence. For Belarus, existing under conditions of factual international isolation, the principal goal of participation in the Union was kept intact: interaction within the frames of the association allowed regulating the issue of debts for energy carriers and expanded the market. For Russia, however, after having mended its relations with the West the geostrategic need to have the Republic of Belarus on its western outposts diminished. In view of this, the Russian side
took steps to make the union relations more pragmatic. Russian Federation's offer to join Russia came out as logical continuity of development within the frames of the Union power. As before, the situation ran under the Russian scenario. As far as at the end of 2001 the "Law on the order of admission to the Russian Federation and creating a new member in its make-up was' adopted in the RF. Thus, the events of the year passed proved that the Union of Belarus and Russia that was popularized for a long time as the most integrated association within the CIS had formal and exclusively political nature with the unilateral Russian orientation of Belarus resulting in the latest proposals concerning the Republic joining its structure. The EurAsEC is another regional formation. At the press-conference on January 25 to summarize the Third session of the integration committee of the EurAsEC, the Secretary General of the organization announced the desire of some of the organizations and intergovernmental structures applied to obtain observer status in this organization. He expressed opinion that cooperation would develop normally considering the historical experience and links between the CIS member-countries. Nevertheless, the previous year has become rather a period of active, sometimes even hot discussions on the further ways and perspectives of development than a stage of real achievements in economic integration. You may recall that last year on May 13 the issue concerning the improvement of interaction and working out of concerted position in the context of WTO joining acquired very sharp character at the regular session of the Intergovernmental Council of the Community. A decision was adopted concerning preliminary adjustment of positions with the one of Russia taken as the basis. At this session, Ukraine and Moldova obtained the observer status with the EurAsEC. At the next meeting of the Intergovernmental Council substantial discrepancies in the interests of the member-countries became apparent. The Prime Minister of Tajikistan said that the state of the integration processes within the EurAsEC does not meet the purposes of the association, in particular the urgent issue of creating a transport union fails to be solved. The Head of the Kyrgystan Government emphasized the importance of solving the issue of his country's goods transit through the territory of the Community. The Premiers of Kazakhstan and Belarus insisted on the need to form common customs tariffs within the organization stressing that progress in this respect was absent. The Prime Minister of the Russian Federation proposed the countries of EurAsEC to switch to make settlement in Russian rubles, noting at the discussion of issued of coordination efforts for the WTO joining that high level of discrepancies still remained.
"The discrepancies are worthy of being discussed in more detail. Considering a highly important fact that the turnover of goods within the Community amounted to only 13 billion U. S. dollars during the first half of the last year, which was 11 percent less compared to the correspondent period of the year before, all the said proves that the structure is too far from the one desirable by the members of the EurAsEC. In addition, the control-gears within the association remain, in fact, as inefficient, while the economies of the member-countries are predominantly oriented outwards than inside the community.
"Last year became the period of organizational legalization and unfolding of practical activity of the GUUAM association. At the organization's summit on July 20, the heads of the participant nations had signed nine documents directed at strengthening economic and political cooperation, particularly, the Declaration of Joint Efforts in Maintaining Stability and Security in the region, Provisions on the Council of Foreign Ministers and other documents. While summarizing the summit, President of Ukraine noted that with the free-trade area of the CIS member-countries remaining inoperative, the ensuring of full-scale functioning of the free-trade area within GUUAM was especially challenging. As one of the strategic priorities of this association one should regard the project accomplished of the Eurasian transporting oil-pipeline corridor in the frames of realizing the concept of multi-choice alternative of transporting the Caspian energy resources.
"At the same time, last year also illuminated the problems on which solution the perspective of GUUAM depended. Foot-dragging with developing economic cooperation had resulted in a situation that on July 13 the head of the Uzbekistan's Foreign Ministry informed about suspension of his country participation in the association. The summit mentioned earlier was held without President of Uzbekistan taking part. President of Moldova subjected the activity of the association to criticism. GUUAM is a regional association of the CIS member-countries without Russia's membership, and for this reason it deems it as political and economic rival of the EurAsEC and Commonwealth in general. While commenting the demarche of Uzbekistan concerning GUUAM, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the RF claimed that such a step allegedly proves Tashkent's gloomy perspectives of cooperation within the frames of the organization. In contrast, promising were called such organizations as the EurAsEC, Collective Security Treaty and others, in which cooperation was developing successfully and fruitfully, and were worth to concentrate on. At the same time, what is important, the Russian side expressed itself for the possible interaction with GUUAM, in particular within the context of such international transport and energy projects as TRACECA and Central Asian Cooperation.
"The latter association formed based on the Central Asian Economic Community includes Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tadjikistan, and Uzbekistan. Within its frames efficient economic cooperation also failed, since it mainly came to rivalry between Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan for leadership in the Central Asian region and accumulation of inoperative statutory acts.
"On May 14, 2002, the decision was approved on converting the structures of cooperation of the member-countries of the Collective Security Treaty to the Collective Security Treaty Organization. On October 7, the heads of the Treaty member-states, Belarus, Armenia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, and Tadjikistan, signed the Statute and the Treaty on the legal status of the CSTO. It was emphasized at the same time that the said documents coming into force would contribute to increasing the effectiveness of military-political cooperation between the countries and organizations. The documents provide for the stationing of foreign troops on the territory of the CSTO countries to
be possible only after consultations with all the members of the organization. In view of the American presence in the CIS countries, such a thesis acquires principal importance for the RF. The RF is eager to consolidate its military presence in this region also by deploying the CIS anti-terrorist center at Bishkek and setting up a base for a collective rapid deployment force within the CIS frames in Kyrgyzstan. There is another remarkable structure also cooperating with the CIS; the one is the Shanghai Organization of Cooperation, SOC, that was formed after Uzbekistan joined the Shanghai 5 in 2001 and includes China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, and Tajikistan. Its basic course for cooperation within the association declared was the fight against international terrorism, separatism, and extremism. Thus, from informal alliance the SOC turned into a regional organization that covers Eastern Europe, northern and major portion of Central and East Asia with a population of one and a half billion people, immense raw resources and economic potential. The sphere of SOC interests expanded from border issues at the very start to a wide spectrum of cooperation in security, economic, transport, humanitarian, and other fields. What is most remarkable is that the majority of the SOC countries are members of the Central Asian Cooperation, however no effort to arrange active cooperation of any sort was successful within it. At the same time, cooperation of each of these countries within just the SOC is believed to be quite promising.
"Lastly, I would like to focus attention on those topical points touched upon by the speaker. The primary goals declared by the Treaty on setting up the CIS were connected with construction of the new independent states. It is clear to us today that the primary vector of cooperation within the frames of CIS is economic sphere. In this connection, on Ukraine's initiative analytical report was prepared and approved at the jubilee summit of the Commonwealth. It presented the assessment of further development of the organization just on the economic plane. The same subject was discussed at the Chisinau summit and actually was the principal subject among the CIS problems put for consideration at the level of the heads of state. The discussion logically continued during the informal summit in Kyiv. The heated debate at such a level gave impetus to the idea of creating an organization of regional integration. From our point of view, this organization should indeed be seen as a possible instrument to finalize formation within the CIS of free-trade area, including performing by Russia of the interstate procedures related to fundamental documents. It is our belief that mechanisms to realize the IES, should not conflict with the strategic course of Ukraine for European and Euro-Atlantic integration and prevent its soonest joining the WTO. Creation of the trade-free area in accord to principles and norms of the WTO is for Ukraine an optimal level of integration within the IES, beyond which Ukraine actually cannot proceed. From our standpoint and in view of Ukraine's chair at the Council of the CIS heads of state, the primary goal of the IES is creation of a full-scale free-trade area without exceptions and restrictions. With such interaction of the parties, the issue of WTO joining should not be contrary to the commitments stated by the correspondent Protocol.
"The approaches to creating the IES analyzed, one is certain that the assumption they proceed from is working out of a single coordinated position meant to be the conditions of Russia's WTO joining. That is to say, Ukraine would have to take back its signing, as we know, of the bilateral protocols. In fact, creation of the IES on such a basis would lead to the breakup or, possibly, liquidation of the CIS and other regional associations in question here. Such a course of development within the frames of the CIS is contrary to its founding documents and our strategy concerning the organization's structure. We are certain that to minimize the above destructive consequences in mutual trade among the CIS countries it is expedient to start applying as soon as possible the Treaty and appropriate protocol on free-trade area. This is conditioned by the fact that the bilateral agreements on free trade in action of predominantly 1992 and 1994 do not permit to remove obstacles for movement of goods. Moreover, in our view the basic norms and rules of the Treaty and protocol should be implemented into national legislation and control of compliance carried out, as well as moratorium be imposed on unilateral introduction of additional exceptions and restrictions regarding the free-trade regime. Also, Ukraine's readiness must be announced to start canceling its existing exceptions and restrictions. "
Ihor KHARCHENKO, Deputy State Secretary of the Ukrainian Ministry of For-eign Affairs:
"The subject is, indeed, very complex, but, in my opinion if at all the issue is being breached, a couple of questions arise. First: what is more important for Ukraine from the point of view of its foreign policy and generally national interests? Is it the relations with the RF or the ones within the CIS? The answer is obvious. Relations with Russia, undoubtedly, are much more important than contacts within the frames of the CIS from every point of view. Realization of this fact should in a way serve an indicator in comprehending our relations within the CIS frames. On the other hand, for Russia the answer to the question which relations, that is, within the CIS or with Ukraine, are more important, is more complex. It seems to me that during the first stage at the beginning of '90s traditionally a certain center-republic attitude still reigned in Russia towards relations in the post-Soviet area. However, as Olexander Bozhko remarked, the difference in philosophy of the development of the majority of the FSU states unambiguously gives ground to assert that to integrate within the frames of the CIS some kind of structure capable of functioning is practically impossible today. It seems that exactly for this reason the proposition was logical for the Ukraine's heading within the CIS frames. Let us recall that it was exactly Russia having put the proposal in the context so that Ukraine paid more attention to the CIS and less to its relations with Russia. Here, the interest, I believe, bears purely objective character that we should not ignore.
"There is another question of whether the participant or member states of the CIS indeed need today the organization in general. To me, it is totally necessary
since it is far from having exhausted all of its resources. This is really so, if we bring to mind the philosophy was laid out by Ukraine, being the initiator of this international structure. The results of public polls periodically taken in Ukraine and other CIS countries concerning the foreign policy priorities of the population analyzed show quite high a percentage in favor of the organization. This was due to the towering level of family ties with the countries of the FSU. As long as this percentage remains this high reaching 20 to 30 and more, the resource of the CIS as a structure intended to relieve pressure brought about by the fact of the USSR gone, at least in the minds of the majority of FSU citizens, proves to have not drained yet, and it must exist. Ukraine now stands a very good chance to realize the philosophy that it had been putting into creation of the CIS. This structure is highly flexible allowing taking within its frames any decision, but keeping on mind that the majority of these decisions turn out hard for execution. Apt to be carried out is only what can be executed in principle subject to all the eleven participants agreed to. As time goes on, harder it becomes to find such mutual consent because of various objective reasons. Nevertheless, there is a need to keep the Commonwealth en bloc at least as a club of the FSU member-nations, this being its primary function.
"Here is an example demonstrating the difference in starting positions of the new independent Commonwealth member-nations. At the start of '90s, all the USSR former republics were admitted into such all-European structure as the OSCE. As thus, during the first year or year and a half the Central Asian powers failed even appear at the sessions with only tablets present. It amply shows the different extent the former Soviet republics' realized their place in the world. It has somewhat equalized today meaning that during all these years each of the countries comprehended its interests, and exactly for these reasons regional groupings appear, and 3 to 4 security elements were created within the GUUAM. Presently, we are filling it with other elements.
"It seems that in both the report and supplementary report propositions, ideas and assessments were heard that may serve a guide sign for the foreign policy department in arranging leadership of Ukraine within the CIS and treatment of the integration structures in the CIS area. These are self-evident. At the same time, I have some observations to make concerning the position expressed in the report on security elements of the CIS structure as well as of the same of Europe and the whole of this continent. First of all, it was interesting to hear the creation of Central European Zone of Stability and Security is still remembered in Ukraine, and which in its time, in 1993, was proposed by Ukraine. After certain decision by the National Security and Defense Council was adopted in May of the last year being backed by substantial majority during the parliamentary hearings later in October, it doubtful if it is worthwhile to give heed to the political ideas that were advanced during the period of complete vagueness concerning perspectives of security process in Europe in connection with the probable then NATO and EU expansion, and unclear perspectives of the newly created organization-the Tashkent Collective Security Treaty. At that time, Ukraine kept on logically with the
tradition still laid by the Declaration on the State Sovereignty of 1990 by having a special stand within the frames of what we call the All-European Security. It declared the desire to remain continuously a neutral and nuclear-free country. As time has introduced alternation into this provision of the Declaration of State Sovereignty, so it adjusts the idea, which was developed by Ukraine in 1993. Today's reality is the fact that Ukraine adjoins NATO in the West to border with the European Union soon. It is the chief reality to be getting ready for and in need of comprehension. So far the vicinity of NATO for the majority of Ukrainian population whips up no emotions whatsoever. In other words, ordinary Ukrainian is totally indifferent if Poland is a NATO member or not. The issue of Poland's membership in the EU, meanwhile, would be understood from experience through their purse, and entirely in a different manner for the whole Ukrainian population. If this is not a challenge to the security yet, then it is a test for the overwhelming majority of the Ukrainians.
"In my view, it is just in this context that one should approach the outlook for the CIS development and integration processes on its territory keeping in mind that this reality i, indeed, exists but doomed to do so during only a certain period. The principal political reality to concentrate on is the expansion of the EU. It will inevitably affect the basic interests of our national security and defense in all the other spheres, that is, economy, politics, etc. Anatoliy Zlenko said that the beginning of the year was marked by the series of highly important events of international politics that attracted attention of the whole world, including this region too. For a time, the problematic of the CIS paled into the background. In my opinion, the process is impartial and, by the highest standards, should be greeted: in no other way it will develop further."
"I am sorry for taking the floor again, but Ihor Kharchenko's commentary provoked a remark from me. The initiative of 1993 to form in the Central Eastern Europe an area of stability and security was taken under somewhat different condition and shaped in other historical actualities. It came to my mind because there certain grounds today to revive it filled with a bit new meaning. What I hint at is the fact that among the NATO member-countries certain differences in relations among themselves are observed. The Iraq crisis brought to light especially the different approaches of the old and new Europe. The issue at question is the occurrence when the NATO candidate- countries invited in Prague last year unanimously backed the USA, while France, Germany, and Belgium opposed the military operation. However, today, new threats and challenges exist already of the kind that are called asymmetrical. I mean not the international terrorism, but the 'soft' threats connected with illegal migration and drug trafficking, the latter being the one that is really of international character. We cherished our hopes that after the war in Afghanistan drug trafficking would shrink, but, unfortunately, the said failed to come true and only transport routes changed. Passing earlier through Pakistan and other countries of the region, the CIS countries are being more actively drawn into running drugs. Penetrating from Tajikistan it already
covered Russia and to some extent Ukraine too, standing now at the threshold of Europe. If we do not cooperate failing to create a stability zone exactly on this threat for the countries of the Central Europe, the barrier for it will be lifted for the Western Europe as well. There are also some other issues associated with migration. It was meant that in such a context that the initiative was to be filled with a new content. "
"A new name should be invented or a sanitary cordon thrown against the traffic. In addition, there is one remark more. It is my personal view that dividing Europe into the new and old was politically the My personal opinion as to dividing Europe into the new and old was politically conscious term introduced by the USA at this historical stage deliberately, which I would propose to block out without delay. In my view the phenomena are temporary-Europe will sure survive these differences, which it is already doing. He do hear statements from the leading European capitals, those that have had separate opinion concerning settlement of the Iraqi crisis differing from American and British one. The Conference in Athens demonstrated that the, so to speak, warnings, here again politically conscious, that the French president spoke about publicly are gone. It is Ukraine should take its stand there is neither old, nor new Europe. The only Europe exists that is integrating with Ukraine to be the part of it. It is in such a context the work must go on without deepening the split that started to show. The USA were and are a European power, which fact is acknowledged within the OSCE frames, as the historical experience learned from the First and Second World Wars. Different approaches may exist in Europe and the USA towards such international issues as, for instance, Iraq, but American trimmer attempts to split Europe must be rejected by us. On the other hand, all actions directed at promoting normal constructive relations both through the Atlantic axis and within the united Europe should be hailed."
Volodymyr BRUZ, Doc-tor of History, Professor of the Diplomatic Academy of Uk- raine with the Ukrainian Ministry of Foreign Affairs:
"I believe the majority of factors are in favor of not stirring up the issue of creating a security area in the Central and Eastern Europe. In this respect, I am in accord with Ihor Kharchenko. The matter is not that different historical conditions exist now to solve new problems. The idea was developed at the time when the majority of the East European countries were not members of the European Union. Nowadays, however, after the Athens meeting endorsing them as members of the EU, the issue as to creating one more structure seems to be not as acute to me. This is because all the problems, particularly the ones of security, are to be solved regarding the countries of Eastern Europe within the frames of that proper European security system being created in the EU. Hence, the problem is not as acute. Another argument is the emphasis being put on the assumption that thanks to creation of this area Ukraine may turn out
second after the Kremlin in building a new security structure in the post-Soviet area. "
"I did not say that in my report. "
"No, you didn't, but it is, indeed, present in the document, being an opinion of the collective. I think that mooting it under such an angle has poor tuning: rivalry with Russia..., the Kremlin being first with Ukraine claiming to come after.... For one thing, who would give us that second place? It only remains to speak about it.
"Alexander Lukashenko, while speaking before his "Party activists", saw Russia not as leader of the Eastern Europe. He said that 'Russia in both domestic and foreign policies wasted all the value it had, and is incapable to play the leading role. Only Belarus, indeed, can be at the head of the Eastern Europe. ' With such a vastly modest assessment he claimed that not due to being so wise, but because the situation allowed. That is, he holds even Russia cheap, let alone Ukraine. Overall nothing good would come of it; besides, no one needs it. Having listened to the reports, I have an impression that another structure lacking causes all the troubles and hardships we have. The problem, however, is in the fact that there are too many of them with every one being highly important. But what it leads to? To the dispersal of attention and efforts, of course, with the result similar to the one we are witnessing with the CIS. The failure of this organization to operate lies not in the poor organizational arrangement or the need to form one structure more, be it the GUUAM or EurAzEU. Nothing comes out of the labors to beget the Union Power of Russia and Belarus. Hence, the causes are not in the lacking of new structures, and the solution is to be sought not in creating new structures but in comprehending what is going on in the world and in the post-Soviet area, undoubtedly, under heavy subjective influence of the remnants of the past. Therefore, matters that are more serious are in store here.
"There is one more remark that I would like to make regarding the USA, our strategic partner. Here the thesis was formulated at the end of the document in a summary: "Hence, the US policy today is directed at ultimate disintegration of intergovernmental bilateral and multilateral relations in the post-Soviet area that are coordinated under the aegis of Russia. Before long, Washington will make attempts to exert pressure on the RF through CIS countries by creating instability areas around Russia." Why does the US need to create instability areas on the territory of the post- Soviet countries? I believe the thesis demands additional profound study. There are doubts in this respect, indeed, there are. As to the whole of the report, I would say that primarily it impresses with the analysis carried out with the purpose of finding out factors contributing and counteracting the strengthening of cooperation in the post- Soviet area. What it really lacks is the assessment which tendency overwhelms, favoring plus or minus, going towards the North or South. It would be very interesting. "
Leonid O. LESCHENKO, Doctor of History,
Professor of the Diplomatic Academy of Ukraine with the Ukrainian Ministry of For- eign Affairs:
"With a keen interest I listened to the reports and aquatinted myself with the text of it. I appreciate that attention today is drawn to the manner the interests of this country are being protected. Generally, the issue discussed concern the foreign-policy strategy. The reason it attracts our close attention lies in the fact that if we hush up or forget something, its will have an aftereffect in the future. I share Volodymyr Bruz's point of view that the reports are analytical and can be seem as research achievement useful in practical activity.
"There are several considerations that I would like to share with you. That second place or center Ukraine could occupy or become also failed to miss my ear. In my view, in the not too distant past, Ukraine had already the chance to gain leadership in the GUUAM, but the impression was that it opted out of the role. We may argue as to the factors that affected that, but looking at the issue realistically the thesis about some kind of second center is groundless, an illusion. The GUUAM was mentioned here with facts presented about how this organization functioned. My impression is that the GUUAM is going through or demonstrates a strong trend towards the break- up. To this day, our efforts to institutionalize the organization by establishing bodies that would suffice failed to materialize. The fact Uzbekistan keeps aloof of it is also the proof of various sort of irregularities and thus sends signals of ineffectual organization. I wish it was a mighty big mistake, but the tendencies analyzed lead to exactly such a conclusion.
"And, finally, the last observation that concerns the formation of the integrated economic space. The one should be preceded by serious analytical work of scientific centers and this foreign policy department. One cannot escape the impression that the decision on creating the Integrated Economic Space was prematurely. Evidently, all the pros and cons should have been weighed first before submitting the issue for discussion at such a high level. The formation of the supranational organ (the report of Serhiy Pyrozhkov's report mentioned the possibility of the foreign trade regulation) may place our country into an embarrassing, even subordinate, situation. I feel strongly the real hazard that may hamper in this IES too: when you hear from the mouth of high standing government officials stating that the way to Europe may be cut short through Moscow, this does not seem convincing and apprehended nearly negatively by the scientific community. One wishes, of course, to offer the shortest way. However, if we do not feel comfortable in the IES in conflict with our interests and with no free-trade zone there, it might be reasonable to take direct and the shortest possible road to Europe through Warsaw and Berlin. And follow this track instead of waiting for the time when all the numerous problem on that Eurasian space are solved. Hardly there is the demand for this country to be able to adjust legislation so that the EU became closer. I have great doubts about that. "
M. V. Kirsenko, Doc-tor of History, Professor of the
"While totally sharing the fair conclusions of the highly skilled and competent speakers, I may afford to express briefly a couple of considerations drawing on what Leonid Leschenko has just said. Of course, through Warsaw is closer to Brussels than through Moscow to Siberia. It was clear from the very start that the CIS was doomed. I do not know whether it was because of hegemony of impotence or impotence of hegemony but, in any case, the two opposing approaches serve for Moscow as an instrument of reintegration, while for Kyiv a vehicle of sovereignty consolidation. In view of the public opinion, this, of course, should keep on existing that way but only with a minor reservation in mind. Public opinion is always behind your point of view and practical behavior, our dear leaders of diplomatic skill, and, in the present case, the matter consists not only in considering the public opinion, but also molding it.
"As to the attitude and position of Ukraine regarding the CIS. During the recent months, a curious evolution has happened in the attitude of parliamentarians, experts, scientists and journalists of the West concerning statements about the economic space and Iraqi situation taken together. Here, the attitude towards this country is highly captious and painstaking. In other words, some minor incompleteness, delays, and even formal irrelevance or inadequate attention to wordings on our part provoke commentaries skeptical and objectionable. For instance, when there is a postponement with opening of a consulate in Ukraine or a delay on technical reasons, conclusions are drawn if it implies that Ukraine turns away from its neighbors in the Central Europe. Also, when we in our lexicon use the expression 'Ukraine and the countries of the Central Eastern Europe', they deduce that Ukraine on its own excludes itself from the Central Eastern Europe; Ukraine, meanwhile, once declared that it is one of the biggest countries in the Central Eastern Europe. If, for instance, France speaks about its relations with the countries of Europe, no one doubts that France is in Europe. When Ukraine talks about its relations with the countries of the Central Eastern Europe, words 'with other countries' or 'the rest of the countries of the Central Eastern Europe' should be added to remove doubts on the matter.
"Regarding the scheme within the CIS and the position in the frames of it. Precisely just after the known declarations about the 'integrated economic space' a press conference occurred at the premises of the Verkhovna Rada. In speeches of Moscowers the following idea was traceable: 'It is good you uttered A. Now, the time is to pronounce B. ' That is, full speed ahead towards the common currency and other organizational conclusions to follow. The West is watching this very closely. As to the relations of Ukraine with the CIS countries, the West concentrates its attention on the fact that our borders are not protected enough from the drug trafficking mentioned here, migrants, etc. Americans are conducting special studies aimed at finding out which districts of Kyiv acquire Tadjik or Uzbek flavor and what conclusions the Ukrainian authority should be drawing. To open new schools, kindergartens, etc. ? All this is scrutinized thoroughly, and the fact that we emphasize the priorities in Ukraine being still of European orientation and try
to form the public opinion to that effect plays an increasingly important role."
O. CHALYI, Director of International Programs at the Razumkov Ukrainian Center of Economic and Political Research:
"In what frame of reference do we consider today this issue? These have changes literally lately, the other days. On the one hand, the change has opened new potentialities for Ukraine that, one should note however, appeared thanks to adequately grounded position concerning Iraq meeting the national interests. I would like to note, by the way, that in many respects it coincided with the tone of our previous discussion at the research council and was realized through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. On the other hand, the frame of reference has changed also altering the rate the processes ran. It is certain. Hence, there are new chances, but new challenges too. It is to reacting to these threats that, in my opinion, Ukraine should pay more attention to.
"The situation around Iraq has demonstrated clearly positions and strategic interests of numerous countries, including the CIS members, too. Without going into detail, I would say that it brought to clear light the following-the difference in the CIS member-countries' position on key issues, the impossibility to build within this space a single political or security mechanism, though quite probable opportunities for economic cooperation. As for our Ukrainian situation. For one thing, I believe Ukraine has obtained now much more chances to act by the way of our leadership, directly through the President who actually reversed attitude towards him to the pre- crisis situation by active cooperation in the direction of the West. At the same time, personality factor also affects development of relations with Russia and the CIS countries. The CIS leadership is a chance and a possibility, but also, I would say, not a very advantageous ground for the period. Hence, the situation is to be very hard. All the skill of diplomacy will be required here to use the position at the most and minimize the threats. I would elaborate by saying that this position should be primarily used to minimize threats for Ukraine and its national interests. Of course, the decision to form the Integrated Economic Space and the Organization of Regional Integration and relations with Russia absorb all the attention, which is not by pure accident. Russian interests were already mentioned here. I would only say that Russia is very consistent in pursuing its goals, which are clear, transparent, and, in my view, raise no doubts.
"As to the reaction of Ukraine in this situation, we did undertake step. The thing is that, as you know, it takes two to dance tango. For this reason, some decisions require compromise, and I would propose to consider the situation of today instead of reflecting upon we could have done or failed to sign. What do we have as of today? We have a proposal as to the mechanics of the 'foursome'. It is clear-cut and the mechanism of it and challenges it sends us are absolutely materialized. For instance, the propositions that Ukraine hand over protocols to Russia-the bilateral protocols that were signed with regard of the WTO joining. As far as I know, and the information comes from the Russian
sources too, this position of Russia is very serious and consistent, and they are in principle positive there that they will obtain correspondent decision of Ukraine. I know that there are precautions to such unwelcome flow of events, but, naturally, it is impossible to guarantee that situation will not develop that way. Moreover, it is no secret among experts that as of today the attitude of the WTO member-countries is that if Ukraine indeed takes such a step, it would have to forget about joining the WTO in 2004, univocally. Therefore, I would propose to give support to what have been told numerously: the highest the pole of our integration to be raised could be the free-trade area, at most. The issue of the WTO, in which I give my whole backing to Serhiy Pyrozhkov, should be treated as far outside the frames of this process as possible. Nothing is that simple there, but the issue of coordination must be out of the process of the Organization of Regional Integration. My total support to what Ihor Kharchenko said regarding the rhetorical questions, and wanted to add that bilateral relations with Russia are sure a priority, and the extent they are made best of needs examining. Here, position that is more active must be taken. You already know about the change of Russian position regarding the AN-70 and some other strategic issues of economic cooperation, and we must speak aloud that still failed to use the mechanism.
"As regards the CIS, I think that the organization, although it seems paradoxical, is exactly such the mechanism that could allow Ukraine to get through the roughness of negotiations on the Organization of Regional Integration with minimal losses. I call on you to think about it. I guess the next year and a half should be the period for Ukraine to stir up it initiatives just within the frames of the CIS instead of the Organization of Regional Integration or the 'foursome' of the future. Thus, we can reach for the two goals. First, Ukraine will not be left alone, which is undesirable, and will not sound the death knell for the CIS. The country does not need it. Secondly, we will be able to make the process of integration into the 'foursome' to proceed more consistently in the manner different from what is now proposed by Russia, through monolithic union and stable currency, that completely fails to comply with the European traditions of integration, the gradual one. Incidentally, the reason why Russia proposes just this scenario raises no doubts since its goal is different from the one of Ukraine. There are certain doubts that Russia will agree to the full-grown free- trade area without correspondent response to other propositions. This is also a challenge of the sort.
"What one may offer just now? If in brief, it is the following: first, the free-trade area, which is in the Ukrainian interest, but no more that that; secondly, it must be based on the WTO standards; thirdly, Ukraine should propose gradual integration. As an option, it could be sectoral cooperation. We have negotiations of consortium in gas transportation sphere. Let us pass these phases first and have answers to the questions that are posed now, and then see how to move further. Here, by the way, the 'multilateral mechanism' is applicable, that is, the asymmetric response to the proposals of key player. The one thing definite to be always kept in mind is the fact that the priority of all our economic relations is
Russia. This is certain, however the machinery to realize it may be different.
"To summarize, I want to say that the situation is, indeed, quite a challenge, but it should not be seen as a one-side medal; but there is a reverse too. Besides, the matter involves a company we keep, and, as all of you know, it is easier to solve problems together. I would like the people that are directly to participate in realization of Ukrainian interests to have strong natural impulse not to compromise at the sake of European perspective. If under these conditions they succeed, it will be the best response. How to react to such integration in the economic sphere will be seen a bit later since concurring processes are going on quite rapidly both in Europe and Ukraine. It is important now not to miss erroneously the point of no return, after which, in my view, the coming back would be hard, if at all possible, with the European guiding lights being even farther than today. "
Yuriy KOCHUBEI, Can-didate of Philology, Professor of the Diplomatic Academy of Ukraine, Head of the Ukra-inian Foreign Policy Society:
"What is the Integrated Economic Space? There is a question for us and some other people. Why are we being drawn into something what we do not know? What is a free trade area and regulation observed there are known from experience at least. It was tested, as they say, in Europe. Here we have so much unknown and so many questions raised that to make a decision on the issue, Anatoliy Maxymovych, one is to follow a well-tried road of creating commissions, committees, etc. to study it again and again. It should be later that we are to see is it worth of joining or not. Some kind of speeding-up of the process going on (especially if one recalls Mr. Kasianov) was mentioned here. Of course, we do not need the speeding-up of such kind. We have to calculate the thing well so that not to get stuck in what we do not need at all.
"As to the issue of the WTO, it seems to me that already today we have to press for Ukraine being recognized a market economy country. It is very important from my point of view because after that our enterprises would be able to cooperation with other within the frames of contractual law. The WTO issue is so complex that, honestly speaking, I am afraid for the economy of this country founded on corruption. Will it be possible for us to bear such a test in economic sphere? No matter what, we must join the organization and be there ahead of Russia. Either ahead of it, or, for once, along with it. Otherwise, a big threat is indeed in store for us here, of which we will be able to make sure very soon.
"While speaking about cooperation with the CIS, we deem it as a good organization, although with only a singe superpower in it. This, so to speak, breaks the balance. In other words, equal cooperation fails to result because of the objective hegemonic ambitions of the one superpower. Such hegemony is not in our interests, and it is only natural that such country as Ukraine is looking for allies. In this, I see the importance of the GUUAM, which needs to be rescued. I agree that it is afflicted with lameness,
and needs assistance and initiatives to exist not for effect proclaimed, but produce result. The same concerns the free-trade area within the GUUAM. This is because Russia will also work very hard so that even when signing the treaty on free-trade area it is to make so many exclusions and exceptions that it will be unattractive existing formally and useless for us. I hate to suggest that Russia should trade at a loss, but our relations must be at the level of the WTO demands. For this reason, I join the general opinion that our limit is the free-trade area on the WTO terms.
"In regards of the Organization of Regional Integration, I think that the issue needs to be studied. As to the CIS, the analysis should be carried out to assess the damage it inflicted on us. As was said, let it be that important psychological factor that worked all these twelve years. It will still prove useful in solving some of the issues. It is not capable to do much, however it will serve as distraction, especially for people of elder generation. In this respect, even out present leadership in the organization looks not very persuasive. But what difference does it make? We came to head this organization, which Statute we did not sign. Hence, everything should be done so that to make it useful, to animate it and show it is needed. As to the company we keep, I believe that today it should be the GUUAM."
O. VASYLYEV, Doctor of Engineering, Prof., Adviser to the Foreign Ministry of Ukraine:
"I would like to dwell upon the economic aspect of the national interests of Ukraine and its citizens. We heard that the path to Europe is shorter via Warsaw that Moscow, although the heart of the problem is not in geography, but in economy. If one is to assess the GDP of Ukraine based on the priorities of purcha-sing power, on the assumption of the EU's fifteen countries at one hundred percent, this country will have today only 16 percent. For instance, Turkey with its 26 percent is still deemed a candidate country, and will be that way for a long time to come, since the country is large and its economic indexes are not high. Hence, for Ukraine, the road to Europe lies in raising its economic indexes. If these were close to the ones for the United States (they have 145% compared to the EU), the issue of Ukraine's entry would have been practically solved.
"Actually, Ukraine has decided which road to follow. This is the road of innovative development of the economy, and we have to watch carefully how to make the most efficient use of it in the post-Soviet area of the CIS to increase the per capita GDP of this country's population. This quality can get us to the European level and get down to considering concrete propositions. To judge by scientific and technical potential Ukrainian may be sized up of the CIS territory as a developed country and able to apply it together with what the other countries have to make a step forward. As long as 1995, the Treaty on Common Scientific and Technological space within the CIS was signed on the initiative of this country's president. Though practically it has not been put into action yet, the measures we need may be undertaken in its frames.
"Or, for instance, such an issue. There is the Intergovernmental Committee
of Scientific and Technological Development and the intergovernmental program of similar orientation of operating highly reliable trunk pipeline transportation, which coordination council is headed, by the way, by Boris Paton, the President of the National Academy of Sciences. It makes sense to raise the question of using this program and have this country's pipeline transport in appropriate state from the point of view of technological, scientific and technical support. The issues of science and technology are highly topical in Europe, especially the programs in the fields of nano- technology (physics and electronics). Joint Russian-Ukrainian program of this kind exists, and by drawing into it other CIS countries we can give it a new life and raise technical-scientific potential that is in great demand today in the world to a new high. Within the CIS frames, we should look carefully for measures to take on the way of the innovative development of the Ukraine's economy. This is the road of Ukraine into the future since it has no sources of raw materials that such countries as Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan an, especially, Russia have. Our riches are the people and its intellectual potential; it is the development of economy and its intellectual revenue should allow us to make certain steps towards the European community. Incidentally, the President said once that the country without science is a country with no future. Accent on this must be made so that it could be applied in our advance ahead."
"A brief remark regarding the last address. I am not an economist, but the impression I have is that the trend discernable in economic cooperation of the CIS countries is not very promising. The volumes of mutual economic exchanges of the CIS countries are growing with the regional structures outside the organization they are gravitating to, while the same fall within the CIS frames. This is characteristic of Ukraine; it builds up trade volumes with the EU, and cuts them with the CIS countries and Russia. The same is true concerning the Asian nations cooperation in their region, etc. This tendency is quite stable already. All the economic treaties signed, as well as those that Ukraine attempted to reanimate from the very beginning of its CIS membership are abortive. This is the real problem. It lies in the fact that nowadays the CIS member- countries from the idea of possible mutually profitable cooperation in any sphere gradually arrive to the idea of inflicting economic damage to one another within it, with the latest case of the Organization of Regional Integration being an ample evidence. It is not integration, but something different. Now regarding the WTO and the damage being done. Those countries within the CIS that, roughly speaking, are not economically important, are already members of the WTO, while those indeed significant are arranging for 'signing non-aggression pacts' or avoiding doing harm to each other. Take pipeline transport. During the recent years Russia has built up its capacities and is a rival of Ukraine today. This is the situation, under which mutually profitable cooperation in the sphere is hardly possible to organize despite even the existence of accords. Therefore, I would not go into idealizing the capabilities of this CIS structure in the context of those tasks that Ukraine put as a goal in 1992, but could be solved
exactly at this direction with its present chair in the organization.
"The CIS countries hold together thanks to the only factor of being party to the former Soviet Union, and nothing more, though we keep reiterating the words economy, integrated region, common economic past, and so forth. During the recent decade, each of the countries has been attempting to erect itself a new economy in its restricted area. Russia has its evident priorities within the CIS. The thing that happened to Belarus and the declarations of the leader of this neighboring country mentioned earlier show that both Belarus and Russia had been constructing economy based integration. They arrived finally ...at the need to put the 'finishing touch' in the form of incorporating Belarus as part of Russia. Even Lukashenko could not stomach this. Each of the countries reads in the CIS the meaning to fit itself best. For this reason, it seems to me, the initiative of establishing the CIS that came from Ukraine is more that urgent twelve years later. The Commonwealth should remain as a flexible and peaceful organization, which, I am in accord with Yuriy KOCHUBEI, is needed by a host of population being neither of much help, nor of harm. However, no sense, I believe, to lay hopes on its capability to solve urgent economic issue of today."
Anatoliy M. ZLENKO:
"I would like to thank all the speakers and those taking part in the discussion. Our mission at this session of the Research Council was to examine one more aspect of our country's foreign policy and to clarify more or less our position and what lies ahead for us at least in the close-range perspective. Your addresses are worthy of our attention, all of them being within the context of the problems before us. We aware of where we stand and realize clearly what we have to do in these or other structures. The principal task for our foreign policy activity is to determine, first, our priorities, defining exactly where they are political and where economical, in these international structures, although not all of them can be all called organizations. These are our principal directions. Secondly, it is to specify the position of each of these structures to be done, of course, on the basis of the priorities defined. Third. The existence of the said structures provides for extensive sphere for our foreign political activity. If there were intersections of some interests, I would rather vote for them to multiply instead of vice versa. They are able to crystallize with time giving us a chance, the more so political aspect is always present. The latter also may help and secure us that chance. I am very much hoping for that since as of today we have no chance to find ourselves in the European Union in the nearest future, but favorable political situation may, indeed, develop. It is not excluded. The type of situation I imply is as such. The events of the 9/11 had borne a new situation in the world. Military operation in Iraq are again creates political situation, when you witness some of them fall out from the priorities of the leading countries of the world, while the other join all the priorities or the circle of these priorities, etc. The are political situations of other sort. On the continent, evolution is generally going on. I remember the conference some 10 or 12 years back at Shchizhen.
Representatives of Scandinavian countries there, as I recall, prognosticated that such countries as Poland or Hungary would need no less that 50 years to acquire correspondent features to fit the EU. However, the evolution was so intensive that it created entirely different situation: yesterday, we applauded these countries at the European Conference. They have gotten the keys to the doors opening to the European space. To say it otherwise, they used the political situation. The one cannot be excluded, but it would be erroneous thinking and philosophy to just sit and wait for such a political situation to emerge for us to jump in. What is needed is to work for ones benefit and drag the country up to the level, at which it would be more or less ready to use this or other proper situation. This is my vision of the issue.
"I ask myself why such structures as the GUUAM, EurAsEU, etc. are being created. Unequivocally, processes in search of optimum approach for making position of ones own in foreign policy are going on that would be best adapted to the international realities and serve to own national interests. Ukraine is in search of it own road and wants to be active at it. It created the GUUAM. Again, Russia is not able to fully realize itself. With the immense potential, it knows not how to 'domesticate' someone. It forms its own structures trying it hand in China or the former Central Asian republics, etc. Or to take the EurAsEU, where, it seems, the active search is on of a suitable place of its own or, perhaps, to effect the whole of this area. To top the list.... Another interesting aspect. Yuriy Kochubei mentioned that Russia-allegedly because of it size-fails to fit into certain inter-national structures. But what about ASEAN or NATO? Nations of various magnitudes are there, finding their place. On the other hand, let us take the UNO. Again, there are countries of different size. Rules in the game exist, and, if you observe them, you have all the chances to cooperate with others in it. Our mission is in the making any piece of the game no matter how important to play to the rules that other participants of it have worked out. This is the principal question of today.
"Some are diagnosing the GUUAM as an invalid structure. As they say, one may wait forever. The GUUAM for us is a weekly reports on what is happening on this direction. The Summit connected to it is at the preparatory stage. We know well where we are having just started to work together with the American side over the concrete projects. Having no information on the issue, you draw conclusions, dear colleagues, but do not hurry-the baby is still alive and doing well. Another thing is Uzbekistan, however the core of the organization and the fact that we rely on certain political forces is giving us hope that the 'baby' will grow and develop normally. The only problem we have is the lack of professional skill that is discrediting us. The issue at question is the working out of concrete projects. It is a long time since the previous summit ended with us on the eve of the new one. However, during this period not a single program suggested. Now we addressed the American side for assistance. We have subjects to deal, we have everything, and are working over them with the concrete operation in action. We have also our office working with everything going on normally. Just for this reason, I would
like that you, my dear fellows of the Research Council, avoid producing the illusion as if nothing is being done at the GUUAM here. We keep the people busy but with no haste since the new-born needs a lot of attention to grow up strong and healthy. Do not jump to conclusions."
"The tendencies of cooperation development of the post-Soviet terrain are multipronged. Primarily, it is the political factor, and we are to watch closely who is to effect this factor, how and by which interests impelled. Economic factor is of paramount importance for us presently. The third factor is security, which subject Serhiy Pyrozhkov elaborated today and with additional comments by Ihor Kharchenko. It is the three approaches that we should keep in mind when treating the tendencies of development in the post-Soviet area. To clear up each of them I invite you, my dear Good Scholars. It matters a good deal providing us with freedom of maneuver during the negotiations, meeting, dialogues, etc. Correspondent arguments are needed to discuss that same Integrated Economic Space. With three meeting of highly skilled experts carried out, we have already traveled part of the road; the way is paved now for another such meeting in Minsk.
"The experience shows that there must be the body of activist, a group or core of active members moving skillfully capable under any circumstances to work out position on this or other issue, and, if you will, directives for negotiations for our delegation. It is an important issue though not tragic as someone may present it. My dear Colleagues, I should say that the Integrated Economic Space is a tool, which may happen to arrive to our hands. As those directly concerned with the CIS leadership, we may get access to it. This requires still more consideration and much work to do. "