NOVO-OGARYOVO, Russia, March 5 President
Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday that the crisis in Ukraine
could have a negative effect on the Customs Union linking
Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan, and called for measures to
protect the three nations' producers and exporters.
"The extraordinary situation ... in Ukraine arouses serious
concerns," Putin told the presidents of Belarus and Kazakhstan
at the start of talks at his residence outside Moscow.
"Negative consequences for the Customs Union markets are
possible too, and therefore we should think together about
measures to protect our producers and exporters," said Putin,
whose hopes of bringing Ukraine into the union have been set
back severely by the downfall of President Viktor Yanukovich.