Kazakhstan Chamber of Commerce in the USA

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Negotiations on Kazakhstan’s WTO accession to complete by late 2012 0

Posted on August 07, 2012 by KazCham

By pm.kz, August 04, 2012

Kazakhstan’s accession to the World Trade Organization is one of the most important priorities of our country. The main bilateral negotiations with the Organization member states were held in 2012.

As the Ministry for Economic Integration of Kazakhstan reports, the process of bilateral and multilateral negotiations on Kazakhstan’s WTO accession will be completed by the end of 2012.

The work conducted in the first half of the year resulted in signing Protocols on completion of bilateral negotiations on Kazakhstan’s joining the Organization with Argentine and Saudi Arabia.

To date, Kazakhstan completed bilateral negotiations on access to the commodity and services market with all the WTO member states interested in access to Kazakhstani market. These are Kyrgyzstan, Georgia, Pakistan, Turkey, China, Korea, Oman, Japan, Cuba, Mexico, Norway, Dominican Republic, Bulgaria, Switzerland, Egypt, Israel, Brazil, Malaysia, Canada, Australia, India, Ecuador, Republic of El Salvador, USA, EU, Guatemala, Argentine, Saudi Arabia.

Besides, it is planned to complete negotiations with some of the members of the working group on Kazakhstan’s WTO accession by October 2012 taking into consideration the necessity of adjustment of charges for goods connected with the commitments within the Customs Union.

Besides, the negotiations with the European Union on export customs duties of Kazakhstan as for sensitive items for the EU within the framework of Kazakhstan’s WTO accession near completion.

It is worth noting that negotiations on the state support measures for agriculture are held during the period from May to September. Multilateral talks will be completed and a final version of a draft Report of the working group on Kazakhstan’s WTO accession will be developed by November 2012. The package of signed documents is to be ratified later.

As earlier reported, the 11th session of the working group in Kazakhstan’s WTO accession was held in Geneva in April 2012. The draft final document describing the trade and economic regime of Kazakhstan and outlining conditions and commitments of our country as a WTO member was discussed at the session.

As the Ministry for Economic Integration reports, the members of the working group familiarized with the recent amendments to Kazakhstani legislation and plans of legal reforms aimed at bringing the legislation into compliance with the rules of the WTO at that session.

The negotiations are held on the basis of the priorities of economic development of the country taking into consideration the processing industry, the Ministry informs.

Kazakhstan can join WTO in 2012 0

Posted on November 30, 2011 by Alex

E. Kosolapova, Trend, Nov 23, 2011

Kazakhstan could become a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 2012, Kazakh Prime Minister Karim Massimov said, KazTAG reported.

“We hope that our country will join the WTO in the next 12 months,” Massimov said at the third Economic Forum Expert-100-Kazakhstan on Wednesday.

According to Massimov, Kazakhstan’s principles on global competitiveness and integration into the global processes do not contradict creating the Common Economic Space, rather complete each other.

The World Trade Organization (WTO) is an organization that intends to supervise and liberalize international trade. The organization officially commenced on January 1, 1995, replacing the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), which commenced in 1948.

The organization deals with regulation of trade between participating countries, provides a framework for negotiating and formalizing trade agreements.

The WTO has 153 members, representing more than 97 percent of the world’s population, and 30 observers, most seeking membership.

Do you have any feedback? Contact our journalist at agency@trend.az

 

SOURCE: http://www.kazakhembus.com/index.php?mact=News,cntnt01,detail,0&cntnt01articleid=804&cntnt01origid=15&cntnt01returnid=201

 

Russia blazes WTO trail for Kazakhstan and Belarus 0

Posted on November 18, 2011 by Alex

GENEVA, Nov 10 (Reuters) – Russia’s negotiation to join the World Trade Organization, which it wrapped up on Thursday after 18 years, should turbo-charge the candidacy of its neighbours Kazakhstan and Belarus, a senior WTO official told Reuters.

That is because much of the text of Russia’s membership agreement refers not to “Russia” but to the “CU”, the Customs Union that the three countries set up in 2009, so Russia has effectively pre-cooked large chunks of Kazakhstan’s and Belarus’s negotiations.

By creating the union, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin threw Russia’s WTO bid into disarray, apparently willing to risk derailing its candidacy in favour of a revival of ties to former Soviet neighbours.

But after Russia’s long struggle to clinch a WTO agreement, Putin’s detour may end up paying dividends, since it could bring more countries into the global trading system on Russia’s coat-tails.

“Basically what these two other governments were doing is that they went into a holding position to wait for the Russian Federation accession to be completed, because obviously that will be the benchmark for running the other accessions,” said Chiedu Osakwe, director of the accessions division of the WTO.

“The conclusion of the terms of accession for the Russian Federation should … have a positive effect, including on speed for the accessions of Belarus and Kazakhstan,” he added.

“One aspect of the accession will be the goods schedule, so now we know that that is done, basically, for the three of them, because they will accede on the basis of a common goods schedule.”

The second part, about trade in services, was not part of the CU, and so each country has to negotiate separately. Kazakhstan’s negotiation was virtually complete but Belarus had yet to get its negotiation underway, he said.

“When we get to the last chunk, and that is the multilateral part of it, there is a huge part of it which is constituted by the Customs Union,” Osakwe said.

“In the final analysis there will be political decisions that will be taken by the government in Minsk and Astana regarding how quickly they want to move on this.

“But my expectation and what is eminently rational to me is that they would now like to move in lockstep with the Russian Federation.

“And the reason is that if you look at the (WTO) Working Party report of the Russian Federation, the first part deals with a ‘framework’ for making and enforcing policies. It binds all three of them. So now it’s almost impossible to envisage that any one of these three governments economically can go their own separate way.”

Russia’s WTO negotiator Maxim Medvedkov earlier said Russia was keen to see its ex-Soviet neighbours follow its lead.

“Of course we would like to see our Customs Union partners Kazakhstan and Belarus in the WTO as soon as possible. I’m absolutely sure that our accession will substantially help those members to accelerate their process,” he said.

Even more countries might be in line to benefit from Russia’s negotiations since Putin, who is widely expected to return to the presidency in March next year, wants to expand the Customs Union to Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan.

SOURCE: http://www.kazakhembus.com/index.php?mact=News,cntnt01,detail,0&cntnt01articleid=794&cntnt01origid=15&cntnt01returnid=201

US, Kazakhstan sign protocol on completion of WTO negotiations 0

Posted on September 29, 2011 by Alex

Trend, Sept 22, 2011

The protocol on the completion of the bilateral negotiations between the United States and Kazakhstan on Astana’s accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO) was signed on Wednesday by the two countries’ governments. The document was signed on behalf of the Kazakh side by Minister for Economic Integration of Kazakhstan Zhanar Aitzhanova and on behalf of the American side by US Deputy Trade Representative Demetrios Marantis, Itar-Tass reported.

The completion of the bilateral talks with the United States on WTO accession that were held in Washington is for Kazakhstan an important step towards its joining this international organisation. Astana hopes to join WTO next year.

The signing of the protocol was preceded by technical consultations on the issue of access of US service providers to the Kazakh market. This was one of the key conditions for Kazakhstan’s accession to the WTO. Of particular interest were the issues of supply of services for companies engaged in the production of oil and natural gas, telecommunications, construction, cross-border and financial services.

“On the negotiations results the parties agreed on terms that are to improve the investment climate in the above sectors of the economy of Kazakhstan,” Aitzhanova told Itar-Tass. “These agreements will allow the Kazakh government to pursue the policy in line with the country’s national economic interests, particularly in favour of Kazakhstan’s service providers and for improvement of employment in the country as a whole.”

According to the minister, “the reached agreements will create a more favourable climate and stimulate additional investment in the above-mentioned sectors of services, mainly in the processing and creation of new industries in Kazakhstan.” The United States is a key investor in Kazakhstan, foreign direct investment into the republic from 1993 to 2011 amounted to about $40 billion.

Aitzhanova reported that during her meetings with Special Assistant to the US President Michael McFaul and US Trade Representative Ron Kirk, “the US side reiterated its substantial interest for the early accession of Kazakhstan to the WTO and promised to provide assistance in the multilateral negotiations in Geneva.”

According to the Office of the US Trade Representative, Kazakhstan applied for membership in the WTO in April 1996 and circulated its Memorandum on the Foreign Trade Regime in September 1996. Kazakhstan’s Working Party met for the first time in March 1997. At a meeting of the Working Party, held in July 2008, Members reviewed the revised draft Working Party report and identified remaining issues relating to Kazakhstan’s compliance with WTO provisions. Kazakhstan outlined its legislative agenda to complete implementation of WTO provisions and indicated that it was prepared to address the outstanding issues that Members identified and move forward to make commitments.

These multilateral negotiations are well advanced, as is Kazakhstan’s legislative implementation of WTO provisions.

The United States actively participates in Kazakhstan’s Working Party meetings, and has engaged in bilateral consultations on WTO rules and other WP issues with the Government of Kazakhstan. There will be additional bilateral discussions on multilateral issues prior to the next meeting of the Working Party.

Kazakhstan has accelerated work on its bilateral negotiations with Members on market access for goods and services, and has signed bilateral market access agreements with most Working Party Members. It is intensifying bilateral work to conclude market access agreements with the remaining Working Party Members seeking agreements, including with the United States. At US bilateral market access consultations with Kazakhstan in April 2009 by digital videoconference (DVC) the topics covered over the four days included market access for services, sanitary measures applied to imports, legislation on intellectual property protection, and a plan for further negotiations.

The United States has provided comprehensive technical assistance (through USAID) from the very inception of Kazakhstan’s accession process, in the form of a WTO advisor, resident in Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic, and a team of WTO experts on short term assignment for drafting documentation submitted to the WTO, training, legal drafting, and institution building in the areas of customs, licensing, intellectual property, standards and sanitary measures.

SOURCE: http://www.kazakhembus.com/index.php?mact=News,cntnt01,detail,0&cntnt01articleid=779&cntnt01origid=15&cntnt01returnid=201

Kazakhstan Daily News Roundup – September 27, 2011 0

Posted on September 27, 2011 by Alex

ENERGY:

Kazakhstan considering processing crude oil in China – Minister (SRI)

Roxi Petroleum hopeful of new farm-out for BNG oil block in Kazakhstan this year (Proactive Investors)

Tethys reports positive initial results from AKDO6 Doris well in Kazakhstan (Proactive Investors)

BUSINESS AND ECONOMY:

BTA’s capital gap widened 83% last month – central bank
(Bloomberg) – BTA Bank’s capital shortfall widened 83 percent last month after assets dropped, the Kazakh central bank said.

Kazakhstan, China to double bilateral trade by 2015 (SRI)

Talgo passenger train plant in Kazakhstan nearing completion (SRI)

Thunderbird business school expands to Kazakhstan (BusinessWeek)

Kazakhstan completes WTO talks with U.S. on access to markets (Interfax)

Indicators – September 26, 2011 (Reuters)

METALS AND MINING:

Kazakhstan to enter race for rare earth elements
(SRI) – Kazakhstan plans to produce 1,500 tonnes of rare earths next year, aiming to fill the void created by China, as the world’s largest producer of rare earth elements seeks to curb exports, Dow Jones Newswires reported on Tuesday.

ENRC to pick Mashkevich, helping resolve dispute – analysts
(Bloomberg) – Eurasian Natural Resources Corp. (ENRC) will probably select billionaire founder Alexander Mashkevich as chairman, helping resolve a dispute over board appointments and bringing clarity to decision-making, according to analysts.

SOCIETY:

Kazakhs dance themselves dizzy (EurasiaNet)

REGIONAL:

Twenty candidates to vie for Kyrgyz presidency

(Reuters)

Mongolia wants to speed up raising its stake in copper (Reuters)

SOURCE: http://silkroadintelligencer.com/2011/09/27/kazakhstan-daily-news-roundup-september-27-2011/

High-Level Kazakh Delegation Talks with U.S. on WTO, OSCE, Kyrgyzstan 0

Posted on September 26, 2010 by KazCham

Kazakh Foreign Ministry

A Kazakh delegation led by First Deputy Prime Minister Omirzak Shokeyev and Minister of Economic Development and Trade Zhanar Aitzhanova visited Washington on September 13-15 for rather successful talks on the country’s accession to WTO.

The Kazakh delegation was able to complete negotiations, which lasted for more than six years, on the country’s manufacturers’ access to US commodity markets, come to an agreement on the veterinary certificates and the intellectual property rights. Both sides agreed to strengthen the corresponding work in relation of bilateral discussions concerning the WTO.

The negotiations were an important element in implementation of the agreements reached by Presidents Nursultan Nazarbayev and Barack Obama in Washington on April 13 on redoubling the efforts to incorporate Kazakhstan into the global trade relations.

Shokeyev and Aitzhanova had meetings in the White House, State Department, Congress, and met with the US Trade representative Ronald Kirk, Kazinform news agency reported.

During the meeting with US President’s National Security Adviser James L. Jones, the American side has confirmed its support for Kazakhstan’s incorporation in global economic relations.

The Kazakhs also shared with the Americans the outlook on how the creation of the Customs Union of Kazakhstan, Russia and Belarus could affect the country’s accession to the WTO. At the meeting, Omirzak Shokeyev noted that Kazakhstan and Russia, being the Customs Union partners, could join the WTO simultaneously and with the same obligations, as they need to adjust their duties to a common denominator.

Omirzak Shokeyev also thanked the US side for their support of Kazakhstan’s chairmanship of the OSCE and President Nazarbayev’s initiative on holding an OSCE summit in Astana on December 1-2, 2010.

Officials also discussed the current situation in Kyrgyzstan. Shokeyev, who also chairs the Kazakh side of the inter-governmental economic rehabilitation commission with Kyrgyzstan informed with the Americans concrete measures taken by Astana, as the OSCE chairman, in delivering humanitarian help to the neighbouring state and assistance in elaboration of a long-term economic rehabilitation plan for Kyrgyzstan.



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