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MOSCOW, December 20 (Itar-Tass) —— Russia has more advantages than drawbacks from joining the WTO, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin told a big news conference on Thursday.
Russia’s access to the international organisation lasted for 17 years, he said, and “during the negotiation process experts considered all issues most thoroughly.”
“Our level of customs protection after joining the WTO was 5.5 – 5.7 percent,” he continued. For purposes of comparison, the president quoted the rate of Ukraine /after joining the WTO/ - only 2.7 percent, and for European producers – 2.8 percent.
In five years, Russia’s rate would be 15.9 percent, Putin said.
“There are advantages of system character – it is establishment of Russia’s favourable investment climate,” the president said. Another advantage is that our exporters do not experience non-regulated measures of competition with third countries, he added.
“There are not that many threats /after joining the WTO/,” Putin said. He named among those lowering of customs protection for car builders. But in the framework of the organisation, Russia “has many mechanisms to protect its own interests,” he added.
On August 22, 2012, the Russian Federation became a full-fledged 156th member of the World Trade Organisation /WTO/. The process of joining the organisation lasted for many years. Back in 1993, Russia filed an application, and in 1994 the application reached the organisation. The negotiations were in the framework of a working group, which featured countries having outstanding problems in trade with the Russian Federation. The final decision on joining the organisation was made on December 16, 2011 in Geneval. On July 10 and July 18, 2012, the State Duma and the Federation Council ratified the protocol on Russia’s joining the international organisation. On July 21, 2012, President Vladimir Putin signed the law on ratification of the protocol.