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    PUTIN SIGNS LAW ON RATIFYING ACCORD ON COMMON ECONOMIC ZONE

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    MOSCOW, April 23 (RIA Novosti) - Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a federal law On Ratification of the Agreement on the Formation of the Single Economic Zone, adopted by the State Duma on April 20, 2004 and approved by the Federation Council on April 22, 2004, the Kremlin press service said.

    This agreement was worked out by high-level delegations from Belarus, Kazakhstan, Russia and Ukraine, and signed by their leaders on September 19, 2003 in Yalta.

    The agreement laid down the formation of the single economic zone for the sake of better conditions for its parties' stable and effective economic development and the improvement of their living standards.

    The agreement envisages that the single economic zone is an area uniting the sides' customs territories where economic mechanisms based on common principles provide for free movement of goods, services, capital and the workforce, and pursue common tax, monetary and credit, currency and financial, and foreign trade policies, with the latter encouraging competition and maintaining macroeconomic stability.

    The sides determined steps for deepening integration within the common economic space. The main of them are the formation of the free trade zone with no confiscations and limitations, the unification of the principles for developing and applying technical regulations and standards, harmonising the macroeconomic policy and legislations of the sides.

    Relevant bodies whose structure will heed integration levels will co-ordinate and supervise the formation process.

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