On Wednesday in Beijing Russia and China have started talks on mutual access to commodity and services markets as part of the negotiations on Russia's joining the World Trade Organisation (WTO), the Russian Economic Development and Trade Ministry said. Maxim Medvedkov, the deputy economic development and trade minister, is heading the Russian delegation.
During the first round of talks the Russian side will give an answer to China's first proposals on the conditions of Russia's joining the WTO. Several demands, advanced by the Chinese side, do not correspond with the WTO standards, the Russian Economic Development and Trade Ministry noted. For instance, China is interested in the withdrawal of restrictions on the access of Chinese labour force to the Russian labour market.
China became a member of the working group on Russia's joining the WTO, which includes 64 Russia's most important trade partners, in the beginning of 2002.
Xianggang (Hong Kong), the Chinese special administrative region, is also included in the working group as a separate customs territory. Russia has already held consultations with Hong Kong within the WTO on the access to services markets.