Russia to benefit from EU enlargement - Prodi says

Russia will benefit from the EU's expansion, Chairman of the European Commission Romano Prodi said in his report on the EU's upcoming enlargement.

The EU's expansion will improve the conditions for Russian exports to the EU members, because the average tariffs will decrease from 9% to 4%. Energy supplies, which are making 55% of Russia's export to the EU, will be rid of tariffs and quotas, said Mr. Prodi.

He noted that the common border between Russia and the EU would increase up to 2,200 km.

Russia's future proximity to the largest single market with a single set of rules and services will give Russian companies new opportunities in trade and investment, stressed the chief of the European Commission.

Romano Prodi is hopeful that Russia's concerns over the EU's enlargement will be allayed.

In the past few months, we assigned priority to including all the 25 present-day and future members of the EU into the agreement on partnership and co-operation - a cornerstone in Russia-EU relations.

As a result of negotiations, Russia and the EU have advanced towards mutually acceptable solutions regarding the agreement on partnership and co-operation, said Mr. Prodi.

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