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WTO Admits Two New Member States

by Ulrika Lomas, Tax-News.com, Brussels

08 May 2012


The World Trade Organisation is to approve Samoa's accession to membership of the global trade body on May 10, 2012, following Montenegro's accession on April 29, 2012.

Both nations have completed the necessary legislative changes to their trade regimes to achieve membership, after an eight-year accession bid from Montenegro, which began on December 10, 2004, and a fourteen-year accession bid from Samoa, which applied to begin the process for membership on April 15, 1998. The two nations will become the trade organisation's 154th and 155th members.

The terms of membership, including the Working Party Reports for both Montenegro’s and Samoa’s Accession, the Protocols of Accession, and the Schedules of commitments on Market Access for Goods and Services, were adopted by the WTO at the eighth Ministerial Conference on December 15-17, 2012. Under WTO rules, a country becomes a member 30 days after national ratification.

Welcoming the conclusion of the two countries' accession process, World Trade Organisation Director-General Pascal Lamy said: “The accession chapter is now closed. The membership path is now fully open. I look forward to working with Montenegro and Samoa to help them become full and active members of the global trading system.”

TAGS: tax | export duty | law | tariffs | World Trade Organisation (WTO) | Samoa | Montenegro | import duty | regulation | trade | free trade zone

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