Statement by International Trade Minister Ed Fast on Russia’s Accession to World Trade Organization

(No. 379 - December 16, 2011 - 11 a.m. ET) International Trade Minister Ed Fast today issued the following statement while at the Eighth World Trade Organization (WTO) Ministerial meeting in Geneva, Switzerland:

“Canada congratulates Russia on its accession to the World Trade Organization. The Canada-Russia trade relationship is important to us, and Canada has been a strong supporter of Russia’s accession to the WTO. Today marks a significant day for our trade relations with Russia and underscores our commitment to an effective, rules-based multilateral trading system.

“As part of its accession, Russia has committed to the rules that apply to all WTO members and has agreed to undertake a series of important commitments to further open its markets and accelerate its integration into the world economy.

“Closer trade ties between Canada and Russia will bring jobs and greater prosperity to Canadian workers and their families. As a fast-growing economy, Russia offers great potential. Its membership in the WTO will mean lower tariffs and improved access to Russia’s goods market.

“Canadian companies are excited about the opportunities in Russia, especially as it continues taking steps to create a more predictable and secure trade and investment environment. As an example of how closer ties will benefit both our countries, Canadian and Russian architects and engineers are working side-by-side on projects related to the 2014 Sochi Olympic Games. They are being joined by many small and medium-sized firms that are also seeking to expand and succeed in the Russian market.

“Canada’s trade and investment ties with Russia are on the rise. Russia’s accession to the WTO will build upon our already strong bilateral commercial relationship and provide a more transparent and predictable environment in which Canadians can do business.”

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For further information, media representatives may contact:

Rudy Husny
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Ed Fast
Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway
613-992-7332

Trade Media Relations Office
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada
613-996-2000
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