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U.S. Trade Representative Kirk Comments on EU Announcement Regarding Russian Accession to WTO

October 21, 2011

Washington, D.C. – Today, United States Trade Representative Ron Kirk released a statement following an announcement by the European Union regarding Russia’s accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO). From Ambassador Kirk:

“The United States welcomes the announcement that the EU and Russia have resolved remaining bilateral issues in the context of Russia's accession to the WTO. This development marks an important advance in Russia's effort to conclude multilateral negotiations so that Russia may be formally invited to join the WTO in December.

“With regard to the agreement between the EU and Russia concerning automotive investment, the United States looks forward to reviewing the details of this agreement as part of completion of the multilateral negotiations.

“The United States remains deeply committed to working with Russia, through the multilateral process, to enable conclusion of the WTO accession process this year.

“We share the EU's strong interest in seeing Russia and Georgia reach a mutually agreeable resolution of trade-related issues, and encourage both sides to continue their cooperative efforts to that end, working with officials of the Government of Switzerland.

“With regard to the multilateral process, a number of important issues remain to be resolved. These include final agreement on Russia's automotive investment program, Russia's commitment to join the WTO Information Technology Agreement, and certain issues related to trade in agriculture. We have full confidence in a successful resolution of outstanding issues soon.”