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Kazakhstan and Russia to coordinate WTO positions

04 november 2011, 10:34
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Kazakhstan Minister of Economic Integration Zhanar Airzhanova. Photo courtesy of flickr.com
Kazakhstan Minister of Economic Integration Zhanar Airzhanova. Photo courtesy of flickr.com
Kazakhstan Parliament has ratified a Treaty On functioning of the Customs Union under a multilateral trade system on Novermber 3, Tengrinews.kz reports. The document will allow Kazakhstan to become closer to Russia and Belarus in entering the WTO.

“Now we have to achieve a consolidated balance with Russia. They have higher obligations on thousands of positions and we have to find a balanced average on these positions that would suit our WTO partner-countries,” Kazakhstan Minister of Economic Integration Zhanar Airzhanova told the Senators explaining that Kazakhstan will work on it in 2012.

“Kazakhstan had been ready to enter the WTO, then the Customs Union appeared and the idea to enter the WTO all three countries together. As if nobody of those people who had been working on entering the WTO knew the entering requirements and that entering the WTO in unions was not allowed,” senator Baurzhan Mukhanedzhanov said about Kazakhstan entering the WTO.

Minister Aitzhanova noted that Kazakhstan currently has agreements with 30 of 36 countries, the European Union is one of the main negotiators. “We still need to agree with the European Union on export customs duties, we have agreed on import customs duties and services. By the way, Kazakh content in the services have been left unchanged. It was one of the most difficult issues to negotiate,” the Minister said.

According to her, should Kazakhstan forego its demands in relation to export customs duties, the negotiations could finish tomorrow. But in such case Kazakhstan will lose a substantial portion of fiscal duties and there will be nothing to support goods processing with. According to Zhanar Aitzhanova, Kazakhstan is holding its positions and is getting closer to its targets and the finish with every round of negotiations. According to her, the WTO puts forth overly high requirements for oil and gas producing countries.

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