News 1031 views last update:Feb 25, 2016

WTO causes losses for Russian pig farming

The Eurasian Economic Commission (EEC), the Customs Union’s governing body, recognised that the increase of pork imports by 16% in September this year happened after the reduction of tariffs on the import of live pigs during the country's accession to the WTO.

As noted in the EEC report, the growth of pork import “is obviously a direct consequence of the introduction of the zero rate import duty on this type of meat imports to Russia within the established quotas, and a decline of 10% in duty for the supply of pork outside the quota."

The National Union of Pig Farmers currently raised the issue of changing the rules of the Russian WTO membership. To do this, the representatives of the Union filed an investigation to determine the possible harm  the pig industry of Russia will experience after its membership to the WTO.

However, under the rules of the WTO the country can seek a reconsideration of individual items of the agreement , only if a particular industry is harmed and directly linked to changes in customs duties.

"The Commission is open to cooperation and if there are grounds for protective measures we are ready for consultation and work on special investigations," said the representative of the EEC.

If in the coming months, pork imports continue to rise, the experts do not doubt that the EEC recognises WTO harmful for Russian pig farming and will introduce protective measures. Although some experts say that situation could stabilise soon.

"But after a while the situation will stabilize, imports of meat over the existing quota has no economic sense, and next year the level [of quota] will be the same as in 2012 – 430,000 tonnes," said the president of the National Meat Union, Alexei Yushin.

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