Armenia Still Likely to Join WTO

YEREVAN (Noyan Tapan)–"I don’t think that the recent tragic events in Armenia will entail any political consequences capable of adversely affecting and even calling into question Armenia’s request for World Trade Organization membership as no country in the world is insured against terrorism," Presidential Spokesman Vahe Gabrielian said in a Noyan Tapan interview.

However–Gabrielian said that the negotiating process is a week or ten days behind schedule–which might become a serious problem for Armenia. "WTO membership is Armenia’s high-priority task today. Armenia hopes to be admitted to the WTO already this year–that is–by the time the new round of talks on the WTO legal basis is to begin," Gabrielian added.

An Armenian delegation recently participated in the Geneva talks. The negotiating process is proceeding well and there has been no additional information from the WTO leadership regarding changes in its position on Armenia’s bid for membership since the tragic events of October 27.

According to the presidential spokesman–the new government and parliament will have to do much for Armenia’s WTO membership and 2000 budget approval. After Armenia is admitted to the WTO–the ninety agreemen’s of this organization are to be legally enforced in the territory of Armenia–that is why several laws–a number of sub-legislative acts and other normative documen’s must be adopted.

President Robert Kocharian is doing everything possible for the life in the republic to stay in its normal course–Gabrielian said. There are yet no sings that the October 27 events will adversely affect the flow of investmen’s in Armenia–he suggested.

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