The Geopolitics and Evolution of the Eurasian Economic Union

May 29, 2014 | 09:14 GMT

Russia's goals for the Eurasian Economic Union
Russian President Vladimir Putin (back C) attends a meeting of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council at the Kremlin in Moscow on Dec. 24, 2013



Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan will sign the foundation treaty of the Eurasian Economic Union on May 29, with the bloc set to formally debut on Jan. 1, 2015. The Eurasian Economic Union is about much more than economics; it is a bloc meant to rival the European Union and the United States in its influence in Russia's near abroad. The crisis in Ukraine has aggravated long-standing tensions between Russia and the West, and the Eurasian Economic Union will serve as a primary platform for Moscow to challenge EU and U.S. influence in the former Soviet periphery in coming years. 

The Eurasian Economic Union is meant to be altogether different from its rival system, the European Union. It is also meant to rival the European Union not only in matters of economic integration but also in foreign policy orientation and security and military affiliation....

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