Member of Tajikistan’s lower chamber (Majlisi Namoyandagon) of parliament Saidjafar Usmonzoda, who is also the leader of the Democratic Party of Tajikistan (PDT), has called on President Emomali Rahmon to promote Tajikistan’s accession to the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), and thereby, put an end to problems facing Tajik labor migrants in Russia.   

“Taking into consideration the security situation in the region, our party board has decided that it would be better for Tajikistan to be close to Russia and join this Union,” DPT leader told Asia-Plus in an interview. 

According to him, Russia feels indecisive to a certain extent in Central Asia “despite organizations and alliances it has in the region.”  “In other words, the majority of the Central Asian nations do not accept Russia’s proposals fully,” said Usmonzoda.  “On the other hand, the regional security is provided by the Russian 201st military base deployed in Tajikistan.  The Taliban, who now control Afghanistan, are afraid only of Russia.  It is still unclear who is behind them that they were able to seize power in Afghanistan so confidently.” 

“First of all, security aspects require us to join the Eurasian Economic Union and Russia to reinforce its military base in Tajikistan and provide regional security,” DPT leader said. 

He also noted that labor migrants are a critical component in the economy of Tajikistan, and therefore, labor migrants should have favorable conditions and their right should be protected.

“With the accession of Tajikistan to the EAEU, our labor migrants will receive benefits, and, as a consequence, migrants’ remittances will increase,” Usmonzoda added.

He further noted that “accession to this organization does not mean that we will become a colony of another state.”  “And at the same time we will be able to attract various funds from other sources and develop the economy,” Usmonzoda said

According to him, the problems that have arisen in Tajikistan today can be solved only with the help of Russia.  “There are no other open doors,” DPT leader noted.

Asked whether Tajikistan’s accession to the EAEU will affect its relations with the European Union countries, China, South Asian countries and some other countries that view negatively this organization, he said, “We will continue our political and economic relations with all them on the basis of existing agreements.” 

Recall, the Eurasian Development Bank (EDB)’s analysts have assessed the economic effects of Tajikistan’s possible accession to the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU).  According to them, the main advantages of the country’s possible joining the EAEU are expected to materialize in realization of the advantages of the common labor market and development of the country’s trade and investment potential.

The authors of an analytical report released by EDB on November 23, 2020, estimate that the annual growth rate of the nation’s economy may increase by up to 3 percentage points.

Economic Effects of Tajikistan's Accession to the Eurasian Economic Union says the high level of current trade integration with EAEU countries is one of the key prerequisites for Tajikistan’s accession to the Union.

 The Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) is an economic union of states located primarily in northern Eurasia.  A treaty aiming for the establishment of the EAEU was signed on May 29, 2014 by the leaders of Belarus, Kazakhstan and Russia, and came into force on January 1, 2015.  Treaties aiming for Armenia's and Kyrgyzstan's accession to the Eurasian Economic Union were signed on October 9 and December 23, 2014, respectively.  Armenia's accession treaty came into force on January 2, 2015.  Kyrgyzstan's accession treaty came into effect on August 6, 2015.

The Eurasian Economic Union has an integrated single market of 183 million people and a gross domestic product of over 4 trillion U.S. dollars.  The EEU introduces the free movement of goods, capital, services and people and provides for common transport, agriculture and energy policies, with provisions for a single currency and greater integration in the future.

The Union operates through supranational and intergovernmental institutions.  The Supreme Eurasian Economic Council is the “Supreme Body” of the Union, consisting of the Heads of the Member States.  The other supranational institutions are the Eurasian Commission (the executive body), the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council (consisting of the Prime Ministers of member states) and the Court of the EEU (the judicial body).