Azerbaijani delegation holds multilateral talks on WTO membership

Azerbaijan, Baku, July 27 / Trend N. Ismayilova /

Azerbaijani negotiating group headed by deputy foreign minister Mahmoud Mammadguliyev held VII round of multilateral talks on full membership in World Trade Organization (WTO) in Geneva on July 24, press-service of the Azerbaijani foreign ministry said. 

Representatives of the foreign ministry, the ministry of economic development, the ministry of justice, the ministry of industry and energy, the ministry of finance, the ministry of taxes, the ministry of agriculture, as well as State Committee on Standardization, Metrology and Patents, customs committee and state committee for employment participated in the meeting.  

Mammadguliyev said that Azerbaijan ha already prepared and submitted improved proposals on goods and services reflecting Azerbaijani economic interests to WTO secretariat and corresponding countries. Moreover, he informed about operations conducted and scheduled in the sphere of conformity between WTO and national legislation of the agreement. 

Egypt, Turkey, Paraguay, Brazil, China, Pakistan, Jordan supported Azerbaijan's joining WTO on favorable terms and praised steps by Azerbaijan in this direction. In addition, the United States, the European Commission, Canada, Australia, South Korea voiced their support for Azerbaijan's WTO joining on principle of trust.

At the meeting the WTO members agreed to submit new and follow-up questions on Azerbaijan's foreign trade regime till September 14, 2009. The working group will hold the next regular meeting at the end of this year or in the first quarter of 2010. 

On July 21-22, the Azerbaijani delegation held bilateral talks with the European Commission and the United States and multi-party negotiations with the United States, Canada, Australia, the European Commission, Turkey and other countries on July 23 to discuss support for agricultural sector. Azerbaijan submitted improved ACC/4 regime and level, volume f internal support in agriculture.  

During visit to Geneva Mammadguliyev discussed Azerbaijan's joining WTO with WB experts and UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). 

Before, the Azerbaijani government planned to hold talks in June.

Talks on goods and services were held within prepared report about factual summary during VI round of the meeting in December. But multilateral talks on agriculture were postponed upon the request of WTO secretariat. 

Azerbaijan is willing to join WTO on favorable terms without damaging development and increase of economy, i.e. in status of developing country in future.

Azerbaijan applied for WTO membership in 1997.

According to the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation (CAREC) Program, members-countries of the program will join WTO by 2013. At present, china, Kyrgyzstan and Mongolia are already WTO members of eight CAREC countries.

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