US Wants More Details on Pork, Oil and Siloviks

RUSSIA - The Russian delegation is setting off tomorrow for a new round of talks with the United States on Russia’s joining the World Trade Organization. The parties do not expect much progress, though. Old discussions will be continued while debates on Sakhalin-2 and Russia’s domestic situation will surely follow.
calendar icon 28 September 2006
clock icon 2 minute read

Russia’s delegation led by Maxim Medvedkov, head of the Economic Development’s Ministry trade negotiations department, is leaving for Washington on Wednesday. The new round of talks promises to be a tough one.

The U.S. Trade Representative’s Office gives wary comments. “We will try to find a solution and will be working hard on all other issues,” the representative’s spokesperson Gretchen Hamel said last Friday. Andrey Kushnirenko, deputy head of the trade negotiations department at Russia’s Economic Ministry made quite a pessimistic forecast.

He believes that Russia’s accession to the WTO may drag till 2009 if the bilateral protocol between Russia and the United States is not signed by this October.

The two parties have an unpleasant aftertaste from recent events related to the WTO. In August, Russian Economic Development and Trade Minister German Gref threatened to ban all preferences on U.S. meat exports to Russia in case the bilateral protocol with the United States on Russia’s membership in the WTO is not concluded by late October.

Source: Kommersant

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