Russia: A Long Way to WTO / News / News agency Inforos
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Russia: A Long Way to WTO

Japan supports Russia entering the WTO. According to the Japanese media, this would be announced next week during Vladimir Putin's visit to Tokyo. Russia and Japan would sign a trade agreement that would cut down trade tariffs for nearly 9,000 kinds of commodities, including automobiles, spares for them and agricultural produce.

The two parties also propose to encourage mutual investments and the operation of international phone providers. Since 1994 Russia has been seeking WTO membership. According to WTO rules, each member of that organization has a right to work towards signing a trade agreement of its own with the candidate country before approving that country's admission to the WTO.

In the meantime, the World Bank has published the ratings of foreign trade for various countries. The ratings took into account such criteria as the number of documents that have to be formalized for importing or exporting various goods, the number of required signatures and the delivery time (in calendar days).

Those states that have more efficient customs and transportation systems, show greater specific volumes of imports and exports. Besides, efficient state structures allow for reducing the cost of import-export operations for companies. Each day of delay in the transportation of goods increases their cost by 0.5 percent. On the average, the customs officials' sluggishness raises the cost of the goods for end users by 4-6 percent. The risk of corruption inevitably goes up with the growth in the number of official signatures required for formalizing import-export procedures.

The situation in Russia: for exports 8 documents have to be formalized, 8 signatures are required, delivery takes 29 days. For imports – 8 documents, 10 signatures, 35 days.
Ukraine: exports - 6 documents, 9 signatures, 34 days; imports - 10 documents, 10 signatures, 46 days.
Byelorussia: exports - 7 documents, 9 signatures, 33 days; imports - 7 documents, 10 signatures, 37 days.
Moldavia: exports – 7 documents, 12 signatures, 33 days; imports - 7 documents, 13 signatures, 35 days.
Armenia: exports - 7 documents, 12 signatures, 34 days; imports - 6 documents, 15 signatures, 37 days.
Azerbaijan: exports - 7 documents, 40 signatures, 69 days; imports - 18 documents, 55 signatures, 79 days.
Georgia: exports - 9 documents, 35 signatures, 54 days; imports - 15 documents, 42 signatures, 52 days.
Kazakhstan: exports - 14 documents, 15 signatures, 93 days; imports - 18 documents, 17 signatures, 87 days.
Estonia: exports - 5 documents, 2 signatures, 12 days; imports - 5 documents, 5 signatures, 14 days.
Latvia: exports – 9 documents, 6 signatures, 18 days; imports - 13 documents, 7 signatures, 21 days.
Lithuania: exports - 10 documents, 8 signatures, 32 days; imports – 10 documents, 11 signatures, 35 days.

For comparison:

USA: exports - 6 documents, 5 signatures, 9 days; imports - 5 documents, 4 signatures, 9 days.
Germany: exports - 4 documents, 1 signature, days; imports - 4 documents, 1 signature, 6 days.
China: exports - 6 documents, 7 signatures, 20 days; imports - 11 documents, 8 signatures, 24 days.
Turkey: exports - 9 documents, 10 signatures, 20 days; imports – 13 documents, 20 signatures, 25 days.

The most efficient operation has been observed in industrially developed countries. On the average, 5.3 documents are to be formalized for exporting goods, 3.2 signatures are required, and delivery time is 12.6 days. Imports would require 6.9 documents, 3.3 signatures and 14 days. The least effective in this respect are African states.
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