MOSCOW, November 21 (Itar-Tass) — Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday suggested discussing ways of provision of national security and protection of economic interests in the initial stage of Russia’s full-fledged membership of the World Trade Organization (WTO).
Putin called the WTO accession a crucial event of 2012. The president recalled that it had taken 18 years for Russia to join the WTO. China had spent 16-17 years to finish the accession talks.
“We gradually moved towards that goal without any rush. We understood the need to protect our economic interests and argued with our partners defending our interests,” Putin said.
“There are risks and advantages. We need to make maxim use of the advantages opened by this move and have a clear vision of risks and problems that may arise in connection with accession to the WTO,” the president went on to say.
“Despite pretty good macroeconomic indicators of recent years, we still lag behind developed countries in labor productivity and energy efficiency. The key assets of many enterprises need renovation while their products are often below modern standards in terms of cost and quality. That’s why the WTO entrance is a serious challenge to our competitiveness in general,” Putin said.
“We hope that accession to the WTO will create an incentive for modernizing the national economy and improving the country’s business climate. It will allow Russia to occupy more beneficial positions in the international division of labor,” the Russian head of state went on to say.
“We need to pursue a goal-oriented, effective and coordinated policy if we want to realize the advantages of the WTO membership. The talk is about active promotion of domestic products to the markets of other countries; active attraction of foreign investments into creation of new productions oriented both at domestic and global markets and exports,” Putin explained.
The president said that most goods in the 21st century would be produced according to inter-state value chains.
“We need to fit into these chains, the links which produce the highest VAT,” Putin emphasized.