Saturday 20th June – Kazakhstan has finalised its negotiations to join the World Trade Organization (WTO) and is on track to become the 162nd WTO member by the end of 2015.
Kazakhstan first applied for membership in 1996, and its accession was slowed by tariff adjustments having joined the Eurasian Economic Union. Its membership will now be formally approved by a vote of the WTO’s 161 members on June 22nd.
The details of Kazakhstan’s membership will remain confidential until the General Council of the WTO formally adopts the deal on the same day. Kazakhstan’s government will then be required to ratify the agreement, and the country will become a full WTO member thirty days after doing so.
WTO Director-General Roberto Azevêdo congratulated Kazakhstan on its accession, stating: “I congratulate WTO members and the government of the Republic of Kazakhstan on the historic step taken today to conclude the accession negotiations of Kazakhstan and finalize its WTO Accession Package. I look forward to welcoming Kazakhstan to the WTO.”