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Russia to be become WTO's 156th member on 22 August

Yesterday, Russia officially notified the WTO Secretariat that the ratification process had been completed, thus securing the way for the country to become the 156th member of the WTO on 22 August. To recap, this notification follows approval by President Vladimir Putin on 21 July, the Federal Council on 18 July and the Duma on 10 July.

We see the planned initial decrease in import tariffs on 22 August as fairly insignificant for the overall market performance. For example, import tariffs on cars (both new and second hand), are to be lowered to 25% (from 30% and 35%, respectively) on the date of accession, while on large diameter pipes they will be reduced from 12.6% to 9.9%. At the same time, lower car import tariffs will to a large extent be compensated for by recycling duty. Fully-fledged membership of the WTO provides local companies with access to the WTO deputy settlement body, which is beneficial for Russian metal and chemical industries. Besides, in the long run being in the WTO is set to enhance competition on the domestic markets by reducing the costs of imported goods and allowing more FDI into country. That would be positive for consumption and might promote supply-side modernisation. 

Maxim Oreshkin, Daria Isakova
VTB Capital analyst


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