“There's clearly an acceleration in this Russian accession to the WTO recently. I now believe that Russian accession to the WTO is in sight. I even would say it can be done by the end of this year when we have a WTO ministerial,” Lamy said. — File Photo

 

GENEVA: Russia's accession to the World Trade Organisation (WTO) is in sight and could be sealed by the end of this year, WTO Director General Pascal Lamy told Reuters in an interview.

“There's clearly an acceleration in this Russian accession to the WTO recently. I now believe that Russian accession to the WTO is in sight. I even would say it can be done by the end of this year when we have a WTO ministerial,” Lamy said.    Russia's 18-year quest to join the WTO is a history of missed deadlines and optimistic predictions of an imminent deal, but Lamy said he had never made such a prediction before.

“As always in this sort of negotiation, a few nuts remain to be cracked until the very last minute,” he said. “But my sense, for what it's worth, and I'm only a facilitator in this sort of negotiation, is that there is now political resolve and enough technical maturity for it to happen.”—Reuters

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