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  Sunday, October 20, 2019
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Russia and Pakistan will soon sign a protocol on the completion of bilateral talks on Russia's accession to the WTO
"Today or perhaps tomorrow we will sign a protocol on the completion of talks with Pakistan," said Maxim Medvedkov, the director of Russian Economic Development and Trade Ministry's department for trade negotiations. Medvedkov is also the head of the Russian delegation at the talks on the Russia's accession to the WTO. Russia has already completed bilateral talks with 33 WTO member countries, which account for 87% of Russia's foreign trade. When speaking last Friday at a session of the Working Party on Russia's accession to the WTO, Economic Development and Trade Minister German Gref said the negotiations with five other WTO member countries were approaching the final stage. "The talks with four more countries could be completed by September 1," he said. "The Russian, American, Indian and Japanese authorities have agreed to complete the talks no later than by the end of the year." Russian signed bilateral protocols with Norway and Mexico last week in Geneva, which was hosting another round of talks on Russia' accession to the WTO. Medvedkov said: "We held about 15 meetings on goods and a dozen on services. The number of countries we have to complete the talks with is gradually falling." "We have to settle only one or two issues with a number of other countries," he added. " In particular, only a single issue remains to be resolved with Panama. The issue concerns the classification of Panama as an off-shore zone." "Our partners intend to prove that Panama complies with all international banking principles, but the Central Bank of Russia will have the last word in this matter," Medvedkov said. Moreover, the Russian delegation held the 31st round of talks with Uruguay in Geneva. "We agreed to exchange the final proposals on the format of the possible agreements on goods in the near future," Medvedkov said. According to him, the talks with Brazil are scheduled for tomorrow, June 29. It will be the first talks with Brazil within the last six months. Brazil does not agree with the Russian system of distributing meat quotas, but it still has not submitted any legal claims
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