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WTO formally adopts Russia accession agreement

(Xinhua)

10:52, December 17, 2011

GENEVA, Dec. 16 (Xinhua) -- A ministerial meeting of the World Trade Organization in Geneva formally adopted the accession agreement of the Russia Federation, drawing a finishing line for the country's 18-year-long membership accession.

Russia Minister of Economic Development Elvira Nabiullina told ministers and trade representatives from all WTO members after the adoption of the accession agreement that it is an event both Russia and the World Community have been waiting for a long time.

"WTO members will get access to a common market of 165 million people (Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan),"she said.

WTO Director-General Pascal Lamy said it is a"historic moment for the Russia Federation and for the rule-based Multilateral Trading System."

With the accession of Russia, he said, the WTO will cover over 97 percent of all world trade.

Russia will become a formal WTO member 30 days after the adoption of the agreement.

The Russian accession agreement contains 30 bilateral agreements on market access for services and 57 on market access for goods. On average, the final legally binding tariff ceiling for Russia will be 7.8 percent compared with a 2011 average of 10 percent for all products.

The average tariff ceiling for agriculture products will be 10.8 percent, lower than the current average of 13.2 percent, while the ceiling average for manufactured goods will be 7.3 percent versus the 9.5 percent average today on manufactured imports.

The final bound rate will be implemented on the date of accession for more than one third of national tariff lines with another quarter of the tariff cuts to be put in place three years later.

 
 
 
 
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The longest implementation period is 8 years for poultry, followed by 7 years for motor cars, helicopters and civil aircraft.

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