the Russia-led Customs Union

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, which Yerevan has pledged to join as Moscow seeks to deepen economic ties across the former Soviet Union.

The document contains 150 different conditions that must be fulfilled before Armenia can join the economic alliance of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan, Armenian Economy Minister Vagram Avanesyan told a government meeting.

Moscow is currently pushing to expand its economic influence in former Soviet republics. Russian pressure has appeared to backfire in Ukraine, however, where large street protests erupted in November as Kiev backed off from economic integration with Europe and instead signed off on closer ties with Russia.

Armenian President Serzh Sarksyan announced in September that his country would join the Customs Union after a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow.

© Сollage by RIA Novosti

Customs Union of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan

While the two countries are not contiguous, Russia is the largest trading partner and biggest foreign investor in landlocked Armenia, which shares a border with Iran and Turkey.

News Source : the Russia-led Customs Union

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