European Businessmen Do Not Want Russia To Have Status Of Market Economy

The Confederation of Entrepreneurs and Employers has made an appeal to the European Commission recently. The theme of the appeal is Russia's membership in the World Trade Organization. It is an interesting document. No tapping on the shoulder. No curtsies. No assurances of support for the Russian reforms or other pleasant words pronounced by European politicians. The document is quite specific. It is simply a list of conditions, which the European Union should put forward for Russia. A kind of message from the electors. European businessmen do not want Russia to have the status of market economy. The idea is that it should join the WTO without this status, and then its performance will be assessed. In short, Russia should accept 'the Chinese option.' And it will not get anything else anyway. It should be noted that China was promised that such a status would be granted to it in 15 years. And what about Russia? Who knowsе It should wait until "market reforms become a true reality." The Confederation of Entrepreneurs and Employers insists that Russia should keep its import tariffs at the lowest possible level. The prerequisite for entering the WTO is no duty rates above 15%. In other words, keep the doors wide open, and it is not negotiable. All subsidies to regions and special federal programs as well as state support for the coal mining industry should also be stopped. All this should be done in advance, before entering the WTO, "without any transition period." Therefore, it has to be done within the next two years, the Izvestia newspaper wrote.

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