Updated at 16:11,02-12-2016

Belarus set to ratify main founding documents for single economic zone before year-end

Belarus is set to sign a package of major founding documents for a single economic zone with Kazakhstan and Russia and ratify it before the end of this year, Andrey Savinykh, spokesman for the Belarusian foreign ministry, told reporters in Minsk on November 25.

"This will make us a leader in integration processes taking place within the framework of the single economic zone," the spokesperson said. "And we see signals sent by our partners, Russia and Kazakhstan, which also want to intensify the processes. We hope that the single economic zone will start operation within the shortest time possible. I think that all differences existing within the framework of this or that process will be settled."

The three countries, which comprise the Customs Union, initially planned to launch their single economic zone on January 1, 2012.