World Trade Organization accession and membership

World Trade Organization Accession And Membership

World Trade Organization accession and membership

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All World Trade Organization members have joined the organization as a result of negotiation, and membership consists of a balance of rights and obligations. The process of becoming a World Trade Organization (WTO) member is unique to each applicant country, and the terms of accession are dependent upon the country's stage of economic development and the current trade regime. The process takes about five years, on average, but it can take some countries almost a decade if the country is less than fully committed to the process, or if political issues interfere. The shortest accession negotiation was that of Kyrgyzstan, lasting 2 years and 10 months. The longest was that of China, lasting 15 years and 5 months. Russia, having first applied to join the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) in 1993, is still in negotiations for membership. Though it had made much bigger strides by securing a bilateral trade agreement with the European Union (2004) and the United States (2006), a recent move to coordinate its accession with Kazakhstan and Belarus by forming a customs...
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