Another conflict is brewing in the process of Russia’s negotiations with the US administration regarding the WTO membership. Four US senators wrote a letter to the US Trade Representative Susan Schwab that they were ready to vote against Russia’s incorporation in the World Trade Organization, if Russia was not going to shut down its nuclear activities in Iran.
Senator Orrin Hatch, two Republicans and a spokesman for the Democratic Party were among those who signed the letter, The Wall Street Journal wrote. The officials believe that Teheran may enrich its nuclear fuel used at the nuclear power plant in Bushehr and use it for the production of nuclear weapons.
Russian officials repeatedly stated before that the contract signed with Iran stipulated the spent nuclear fuel from the nuclear station in Bushehr should be subsequently transported to the Russian Federation to be processed and stored there. These terms guarantee security, spokespeople for the Russian administration said.
As it turns out, this is not the only problem in US-Russian WTO talks. Optimistic official statements saying that the number of moot questions has been minimized are not true to fact. Another round of negotiations has ended with another failure. Russian authorities are developing measures that they are going to take in the event the talks with the US administration bring no result at all. Russia may seriously cut the imports of US poultry before the end of October.
The next round of negotiations is slated to take place in the middle of October. Russian Minister for Economic Development and Trade, Guerman Gref, set forth an ultimatum to US Trade Representative Susan Schwab in July of this year, the Kommersant wrote. Gref referred to Bush and Putin’s agreement to sign the bilateral document between the two countries in October 2006. The letter written by the Russian minister supposedly said that Russia would have to decline obligations to import US agricultural products, if the two countries failed to remove the remaining problems.
It is worthy of note that Russia’s Minister for Agriculture, Alexander Gordeyev, has already offered to cancel the preference for the import of US poultry. “It would be fair to bring everyone to one standard,” said he at a press conference Tuesday.
Translated by Dmitry Sudakov
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