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27 Jun 2018

Belarus receives observer status in WTO Committee on Government Procurement

MINSK, 27 June (BelTA) – Belarus has received the observer status in the World Trade Organization (WTO) Committee on Government Procurement during the meeting of the committee in Geneva on 27 June.

Belarus’ delegation  was headed by Artur Karpovich, First Deputy Minister of Antimonopoly Regulation and Trade. Members of the committee unanimously   decided to grant Belarus observer status in the committee. The United States, the EU, Japan, South Korea, Switzerland, Singapore, Moldova, Canada, Norway expressed their support to Belarus. Thus, the Republic of Belarus has become the first country to receive this status before joining the WTO and to get the right to participate in the discussions at the Committee on Government Procurement.

Artur Karpovich thanked the members of the committee for their support and noted that Belarus will benefit from the WTO experience in the field of effective regulation of public procurement and the world’s best practices in this field. The head of the Belarusian delegation informed the committee on the regulation of the government procurement market in Belarus, and on the latest developments at the legislative level in this area.

The Belarusian delegation held a number of bilateral meetings with representatives of the WTO Secretariat and WTO members, and participated in a seminar organized by the WTO Secretariat and the EBRD on the accession of new countries to the Agreement on Government Procurement.

In accordance with the WTO procedure, negotiations on Belarus' accession to the Agreement on Government Procurement shall begin after the Belarus becomes a member to the WTO.

The WTO Agreement on Government Procurement is a multilateral treaty with a limited number of participants and regulates the procurement of goods and services for public use. 47 WTO Member States, including the EU, the USA, Canada, Switzerland, Japan, Korea, etc., are parties to the Agreement. Among the EAEU Member countries only Armenia is a party to the WTO multilateral Agreement on Public Procurement. Russia and Kyrgyzstan are negotiating to join the treaty. Kazakhstan plans to launch similar negotiations in 2019.

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