Kazakhstan to benefit from joining WTO: EDB 09 апреля 2013, 16:20
Yevgeniy Vinokurov. Photo courtesy of EDB
Kazakhstan can have significant benefits from accession into the WTO, Tengrinews.kz reports citing Integration Research Director of the Eurasian Development Bank (EDB) Yevgeniy Vinokurov.
Besides, according to the World Bank, Kazakhstan will generate around 6-7 percent of GDP in the medium-term outlook after entering the WTO. “In case of Kazakhstan, just like in Russia, elimination of barriers hindering foreign investments from accessing the service sector (that promotes growth of production competitiveness and efficiency) is the most powerful source of benefits from entering the WTO,” Vinokurov explained.
Besides, according to him, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Russia established the Customs Union with common external rate. “However, they are entering the WTO as independent countries. The WTO allows the countries to take part in preferential trade agreements, including free trade agreements and customs unions. The European Union, EU-Turkey, MERCOSUR are the well-known customs unions of WTO member-countries,” Vinokurov said.
Meanwhile, a major drawback is that the level of market protection cannot be higher than the compulsory levels for preferential trade zone.
“Russia has negotiated the transition periods of maximum length (up to 7 years) on a whole range of sensitive areas and on certain types of goods. The same special conditions are in the best interests of Kazakhstan,” the expert said.
According to Vinokurov, the regional trade integration (CU) and the global trade integration (WTO) are parallel structures and not mutually exclusive processes. “Their combination eases up the process of fighting for a more beneficial position in the international division of labor,” the speaker said.
According to Vinokurov, there is no alternative to accession into the WTO: membership in this “trade club” is not a guarantee but a prerequisite of a civilized participation in the global trade. However, he noted that it was important not to do it at all costs and to hold the grounds in protecting of Kazakhstan's own market.
Besides, according to EDB, the cumulative economic effect from the CU from 2011 to 2030 will make $632 billion (calculated based on prices of 2010) in Russia and $107 billion in Kazakhstan. “But achieving the maximum effect requires additional work on technical rapprochement, harmonization of the economic legislation and intensification of mutual investments,” Vinokurov said.
Besides, according to him, the accumulated growth of the national GDP will be achieved through accumulation of capital, mutual investments, growth of the economy’s competitiveness (increasing the share of goods with high value added and decreasing the share of primary resources in GDP) and growth of the trade turnover both inside the CES (Common Economic Space) and with partners outside of it.
By Azhar Ashirova