The fifth sitting of the state commission on Azerbaijan joining the World Trade Organization (WTO) has been held today at the Baku business centre. The sitting was chaired by the Minister of Economic Development (MED) Heydar Babayev.
On the results of the sitting an accord to send documents to the WTO Secretariat has been reached and the country will await the date for holding negotiations, which, according to Babayev, will rather take place in March.
As the negotiation group head, deputy foreign Minister Mahmud Mammadkuliyev told Trend, the documents will be sent to Geneva during the coming 2-3 days to set the meeting date. He thinks the talks will rather take place by the end of March, as 4-5 weeks are needed for the working group members to get familiar with the documents submitted. They are on tariffs, services, plans on amendments in legislation, subsidizing of agriculture, responses to the WTO member states questions.
В"Azerbaijan joining WTO is obligatory due to its integration into the world economy. Besides, the negotiation process is very useful, as a lot of meetings with the WTO member states are to be held which enables to remove shortcomings in the legislation. At the same time,
each country tries to defend maximally its interests, Babayev noted. The Minister said, the country may join in the coming years, but he refused to name the exact date, as it depends on the conditions to be put forward. Now the country entered its decisive stage bilateral talks with the countries. The minister emphasized two major points strengthening of measures on the legislation improvement and intensification of bilateral talks.
Talks with USA, Canada, Turkey and Australia have been held so far. The main requirements are related to tariffs, amendments to legislation and their harmonization with the WTO requirements.
Babayev thinks the country is to defend its interests maximally. В"The priority for us during the talks is to defend those sectors, which output is produced in the country. Import customs rates are to be regulated depending on it, the Minister noted.