I am sort of interested in political (and economic) possibilities of the EU joining the Eurasian Economic Union.

This is of course sort of an alternative to Russia joining EU as was asked about in this other question.

The main motivator that I can think of this is that deepening economic ties between EU and Russia would mitigate the risks of outright wars between the two (as in that case they would be destroying their own assets).

Now I am not sure about whether any interest have ever been expressed toward this. On another hand my understanding is that UK's Brexit (if it becomes reality) might make some form of tighter economic integration between EU and Russia more likely.

Excluding lack of expressed intent or interest, what factors (political, structural, economic, etc) would make it unlikely for the European Union to join the Eurasian Economic Union?

1 Answer 1


In short, No.

There are a number of approaches to this answer. First, the Eurasian union is an association of sovereign states. The EU is not a sovereign state, so it could not join. The rules could be bent, but if the EU were to join the EAEU as a bloc, it would require treaty change, and the agreement of all 28 (or 27) members. There is no prospect of this in the medium to long term.

Individual members of the EU could leave the EU. However, the benefits of EU membership currently outweigh the benefits of EAEU membership, so there is very little incentive for any current member of the EU to leave.

It would be technically possible for the two Unions to merge, but the political requirements of EU states are very far from being met in Belarus, Russia and the other EAEU countries. There is no political will for this to happen. Economically, the EAEU countries don't meet the standards for EU membership. It would require all the laws of the EU and EAEU to be adapted to match each other, and at every turn each law change would have to be agreed throughout both blocs. Such a process would be breathtakingly complex and prone to failure

Some sort of trade deal could be made between the two blocs. Trade deals are complex and a trade deal with the EAEU could take many years to agree. There seems to be little attempt to make a trade deal at this time.

I see no connection between the UK leaving the EU and closer links with Russia. The tensions between Western Europe and Russia would continue to exist even if the UK is not a member of the EU.

  • 1
    On the other hand, if the EU did ask to join the Eurasian Union, I'm sure Putin would be tickled pink.
    – anon
    Sep 7, 2019 at 19:10

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