GENEVA, March 25. /TASS/. The Russian delegation in the World Trade Organization (WTO) is ready to protect Russia’s interests in the trade dispute with the EU, an official with Russia’s representative office under WTO in Geneva told TASS on Wednesday.
The delegation still finds it possible to resolve the issue via consultations with the EU but will be able to defend its position in compliance with the WTO procedures and rules, the official said.
Earlier on Wednesday, a WTO official told TASS that the organization is to hold arbitration proceedings on the EU trade claims against Russia.
The official said that the WTO has accepted the repeated request from the EU to set up a panel of arbiters to consider the dispute. In 20 days the parties of the conflict are to choose three arbiters from the list provided by the WTO, the official said. When the panel of arbiters is set up it is to consider the dispute in six months, he added.
The EU has been accusing Russia of imposing excessive import duties.
In late October 2014, the European Union claimed that Russia imposed import duties on paper, fridges and palm oil higher than allowed by the WTO. According to the complaint, Russia either set a higher percentage rate or fixed a minimum duty regardless of the percentage rate allowed by the WTO agreements.