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Vice Premier: Belarusian agricultural sector is ready for WTO accession

MINSK (BelTA) – The Belarusian agro-industrial complex is ready for the country's accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO), Belarusian Deputy Prime Minister Mikhail Rusy told media on 14 April, BelTA has learned.

“Everything has been estimated for the WTO entry. This work had been conducted ahead of the country's accession to the Eurasian Economic Union. Then we calculated everything taking into account the WTO mode of operation,” noted Mikhail Rusy.

The Vice Premier believes that the interests of not only the agricultural sector but the whole country should be defended in the WTO accession process. “If we join some association or organization, we should consider the country's interests first. Each WTO member state is part of a wide range of blocs and unions and has a different market protection level and preferences,” he noted

According to Mikhail Rusy, Belarus' approaches meet the WTO requirements on the red and green boxes regarding state support for agriculture. “We have already restructured a number of documents on agriculture state support and specified what will make part of the green box. We should neither run behind nor rush in what concerns the WTO accession,” he said.

The Vice Premier stressed that the conditions on which Belarus will join the WTO must not affect the agricultural sector. “The present conditions must not be worsened or discriminated,” said Mikhail Rusy. He cited Russia's accession to the WTO as an example and said that Belarus should stick to the agreements which are most beneficial for the country.

When asked on possible inflow of foreign goods once the country joins the WTO, Mikhail Rusy said that it would not be a problem for the Belarusian market which has always been open for other countries. “Here we should work and compete with other producers. The consumer will choose on the price and quality,” he said.