WTO Secretariat appoints indicative date of next round of talks with Azerbaijan

Business Materials 29 September 2014 17:49 (UTC +04:00)

Baku, Azerbaijan, Sept.29

By Azad Hasanli - Trend:

The Azerbaijani government has submitted the answers to the questions of the member countries to the Secretariat of the World Trade Organization Sept.29, Chief Negotiator and Deputy Foreign Minister Mahmud Mamedkuliyev told Trend.

"We have sent the answers to the questions presented to the Azerbaijani side by WTO member countries after the last meeting of the working group. Secretariat of the organization has tentatively appointed a time for the next round of talks in the fourth quarter of 2014," the deputy minister said.

Based on these responses, the WTO Secretariat will prepare Factual Summary report, which will be circulated to members of the organization.

The last meeting of the working group was held in June 2014 in Geneva. However, bilateral negotiations on goods and services have been held twice this year - in February [alongside multilateral negotiations on agriculture] and in June.

Four new countries - Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, the Dominican Republic and Honduras joined the negotiating process which took place in late June. An exchange was held among three of the countries, however, the Saudi Arabia was represented in expanded format at the talks and has already started to ask specific questions.

In total, the bilateral talks were held with 12 states last summer.

Honduras has already sent its proposals to Azerbaijan, it is also expected to get them from Malaysia, Mammadguliyev said.

Azerbaijan has also submitted a new table with the changes in the agricultural sector of the country for the last three years (2011-2013) to the WTO Secretariat for multilateral negotiations on issues of domestic support for agriculture.

Azerbaijan has had an observer status at the WTO since 1997. A working group on Azerbaijan was established at the WTO Secretariat on July 16, 1997.

Azerbaijan started negotiations with the WTO member countries in 2004. Currently, the country is negotiating with 18 countries.

Negotiations are now completed, and the protocols signed with Turkey, the Sultanate of Oman, the United Arab Emirates, Georgia and Kyrgyzstan. The country is at the stage of signing the protocol with China and Moldova.