The article analyzes the present state, trends in and prospects for the participation of the Republic of Belarus (RB) in the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU). Emphasizing the importance of the EAEU for Byelorussia and that of Byelorussia for the EAEU, the author points out that in the Union Byelorussia expects to reach such priority goals as broadening its external markets, removing barriers in the trade with other participants, implementing a number of important investment projects and increasing the country’s transportation and logistical resources. For the partner countries and the EAEU as a whole, Byelorussia is highly important, above all, due to its geo-economical position and a vast transition potential; besides, pursuing an active innovation policy, the country has accumulated such a significant economic, scientific and technological potential that it is generally recognized as one of the leaders in modernization and digitalization of economy in the EAEU area. Thoroughly discussed are the economic relations of the RB with the partner countries, primarily with Russia with the focus on mutual trade and cooperation between the countries in various areas over the last years. As a country with an export-oriented and open economy, the RB argues vigorously in favor of the quickest elimination of restrictions in mutual trade, thus envisioning common commodity markets in the EAEU area, primarily in energy resources. At the same time, there are problems and contradictions inherent in Byelorussia’s participation in the Union, those being connected with intermittent difficulties in the country’s relations with Moscow. The article suggests a number of ways which might be helpful for overcoming the existing differences between the two countries. The prospects for further participation of Byelorussia in the EAEU, concludes the author, are largely dependent on its own modernization as well as its incorporation in the mega-structures of Eurasian integration such as the Chinese initiative of the Silk Road Economic Belt.
Byelorussia; Eurasian Economic Union; mutual trade; investment; innovations; Russian-Byelorussian economic conflicts; coordinated modernization.