DUSHANBE, March 15, 2011, Asia-Plus  -- The Eurasian Economic Community (EAEC) Court is expected to begin to function in 2012, Belarus Vice-Premier Sergey Rumas told reporters in Minsk on March 14, following a meeting of the Customs Union commission, Belarusian media outlets report.

“This issue has been discussed for a long time and we have decided to speed up it,” Belarusian vice-premier said, noting the Customs Union commission coordinated the plan of actions and under this plan, the court will begin to function starting from January 1, 2012.

The EAEC Court will be headquartered in Minsk, the capital of Belarus. 

We will recall that the Statute of the Court of the Eurasian Economic Community was signed in Astana, Kazakhstan on July 5, 2010, on the basis of the Founding Treaty of the Eurasian Economic Community of October 10, 2000, and the Protocol on Amendments to the Founding Treaty of the Eurasian Economic Community of October 6, 2007.

The Court is expected to deal with disputes of economic character arising between the Parties on matters relating to the implementation of resolutions of organs of the Eurasian Economic Community and the provisions of treaties in force within the Community, and hand down interpretations and rulings on them.

The initial concept of the Eurasian Economic Community was first proposed in October 2000, as a successor to the CIS Customs Union, when Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, and Tajikistan signed a treaty on broad economic and trade cooperation.  The organization was formally created with the ratification of that treaty in May 2001.  The initial five-member group was further expanded in May 2002 when Moldova and Ukraine were granted observer status, and again in April 2003, when Armenia gained observer status.  In January 2006, Uzbekistan joined EAEC.  But later in 2008 Uzbekistan decided to temporarily suspend its membership in the Community.