WTO Director-General Roberto Azevêdo and President Nazarbayev signed the Protocol on the Accession of Kazakhstan following the General Council’s approval of the country’s WTO terms of entry. The document is subject to domestic ratification by Kazakhstan’s Parliament by 31 October 2015.
DG Azevêdo said:
“I think this is a truly historic occasion for Kazakhstan, and for the WTO. In approving Kazakhstan’s accession protocol we are concluding almost two decades of negotiations. Moreover, we are delivering a result which will have a major economic impact, a major systemic impact, and a major human impact. Because, crucially, the benefits of accession can help to create jobs, raise incomes, and improve people’s lives.
“For Kazakhstan, this is recognition of the efforts you have made over recent years and your commitment to this process. It is an endorsement of the extensive programme of reforms which you have undertaken. And it is a message to the world that Kazakhstan is open for business. Kazakhstan’s accession adds an important voice to our discussions here. It brings the organization closer to the heart of Central Asia. And it brings us closer to our goal of universal membership.”
His full speech is here.
Kazakhstan’s President Nazarbayev said:
“Together, we have done quite an impressive job. We are sincerely grateful to each of the WTO Member States for their constructive approach and support throughout a very tough negotiation process. During the negotiations of our accession to the WTO, the configuration of Kazakhstan’s economy has changed dramatically. Today, we are doing business with 185 states of the world.
“Over the past years, we have come a long way to integrate Kazakhstan’s economy into the global market. We have proceeded to implement ambitious institutional reforms. They include further development of international economic cooperation. Effective implementation of the reforms will help to shape a brand new institutional environment. Kazakhstan will soon start working under the WTO rules. Yet for a long time now, we have been shaping our economic policies in the spirit of the WTO, by removing barriers, acting as an engine of regional integration and promoting the principles of open collaboration.”
His full speech is here.
The negotiations on Kazakhstan’s membership were finalised by the Working Party on 10 June. The 52 Working Party members adopted by consensus, ad referendum, Kazakhstan’s WTO accession package on 22 June.
An overview of Kazakhstan’s commitments is here.
Learn how WTO accession negotiations work here.
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