WTO requests to postpone multilateral negotiations with Azerbaijan on agriculture for 2009

Business Materials 16 December 2008 15:03 (UTC +04:00)

Azerbaijan, Baku, Dec.16 / Trend , corr. I.Khalilova /"Azerbaijan held the sixth round of negotiations with the Task Group of the World Trade Organization (WTO)," Mahmud Mammadguliyev, the deputy Foreign Minister, said on Dec.16. The meeting was held on Dec.11.

"The negotiations touched trade and service issues within the worked out report on factual summary, however, multilateral negotiations on the agriculture sphere were postponed for 2009 by the request of WTO," the deputy minister said.

The reason for postponement of the negotiations is connected with the preparation for the ministerial encounter of WTO member-countries, which passes within the framework Doha Development Round, since all experts begun to operate in the preparation for encounter of trade ministers in the agriculture sphere.

"We agreed that WTO member-countries will present their proposals in the agriculture sphere, after analysis of which it will be possible to conduct separate encounter on multilateral negotiations in this direction.  If we are able to be prepared and on remaining issues (in the sphere of commercial regime and market for services), then proposals in the agriculture will pass within the framework the seventh encounter of multilateral negotiations," said Mammadguliev.

The present meeting was very useful, since questions the issues deepened and member-countries are provided with detailed information, but several issues were removed from the agenda.

The idea on development of the design of report of the Task Group was supported at the meeting, and also the seventh meeting of Task Group in the first half of 2009. For this purpose, Azerbaijan will expect questions from WTO member-countries concerning the represented documents until Jan. 23. Within respect to the entrance to the World Trade Organization the official Baku pays preference not to periods, but to quality.

"We try to protect the interests of state in the negotiations", Mammadguliev said.

Azerbaijan desires to enter in WTO on the terms of acceptable for the country, in order to escape possible damage to the economic development.

"If we want so that our economy would be protected and agriculture and industry to develop, we must accept such terms, which will not prevent the development of these regions. Therefore these are very complex negotiations", Mammadguliev aded.

WTO member-countries require from Azerbaijan to reduce tariffs and taxes in some spheres. But as a whole, they continue to insist on the liberalization of commercial regime and service market by Azerbaijan. In particular, requirements on the entry to the bank market remain by means of discovery of straight branches and insurance market for the country - creation of daughter organization with 100% foreign capital.

Since 1997 Azerbaijan is represented in the World Trade Organization in the status of observer. According to the estimations of the Central-Asian Regional Economic Collaboration (CAREC) program, member-countries of the program they will enter WTO until 2013. Until today eight countries of  CAREC, three - China, Kyrgyzstan and Mongolia, are already members of WTO.

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