Talks on Azerbaijan's WTO membership to continue in fall

The next round of negotiations on Azerbaijan's accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO) will be held no earlier than October, the head of negotiating group, Azerbaijani Deputy Foreign Minister, Mahmud Mammadguliyev said on August 12.

"The next round is scheduled for the second half of this year," Mammadguliyev said. "However, a concrete date is still to be set up. In this stage, we have sent our answers to the questions that we received after the previous working meeting, as well as tables, associated with multilateral negotiations on agriculture. All documents which were to be sent are at the WTO secretariat. I believe the next meeting in Geneva can be expected no earlier than October."

According to him, the meetings will consist of bilateral and multilateral negotiations, as well as meetings of the working group on Azerbaijan's accession to WTO.

The last talks on the issue were held in Geneva in June.

Azerbaijan has been represented at the WTO as an observer since 1997 and began negotiating on its accession in 2004. According to the WTO procedures, around 13 rounds of negotiations must be held to join the organization.

The country is holding bilateral negotiations on the issue with the United States, Japan, Brazil, Ecuador, Sri Lanka, Norway, India, South Korea, Taiwan Province of China, Canada, Switzerland, Honduras and the European Union.

Azerbaijan held consultations with 12 countries in the format of bilateral meetings, including Argentina, Indonesia and other countries of the region. These are basically the countries ready to support agriculture.

The procedural rules will be discussed with WTO members within the next, 10th phase. Azerbaijan held bilateral talks with about 50 countries as part of the WTO admission process and adopted relevant documents.

Negotiations with Turkey, Oman, United Arab Emirates, Georgia and Kyrgyzstan have been completed and respective protocols signed.

Adapted from TODAY.AZ