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U.S. Chamber Praises WTO Accession Agreement Between the United States and the Ukraine

Sunday, March 5, 2006 - 7:00pm

the United States and the Ukraine

WASHINGTON, D.C.—The U.S. Chamber of Commerce today applauded the conclusion of bilateral negotiations between the U.S. and the Ukraine over market access issues pertaining to the Ukraine's accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO), calling the agreement a milestone for both countries' trade relations.

"This deal signals a clear commitment by both countries to boost Ukraine's integration into the global marketplace," said Dan Christman, the Chamber's senior vice president for international affairs. "Ukraine can live up to its ambitious WTO commitments and emerge as a strong trading partner for American businesses."

The Chamber was an active participant throughout the course of the negotiations, conferring with trade officials and business leaders from both countries, as well as members of Congress and White House representatives. Congress must first grant the Ukraine Permanent Normal Trade Relations (PNTR) status before the two countries can put their WTO agreement into effect. Granting PNTR to Ukraine will allow American firms to enjoy the full benefits of Ukraine's new openness and market disciplines.

Ukraine has been negotiating the terms of its accession to the General Agreement on Tariff and Trade (GATT), then to the WTO, since 1994. The country is currently negotiating bilateral market access agreements with several other countries, all of which must be finalized before WTO accession can be completed. Lawmakers in Ukraine are also moving ahead with legislation that will enable the country to implement WTO requirements once accession is complete. The Chamber calls on Ukrainian government and legislature to expedite the adoption of WTO-consistent laws and regulations.

The U.S. Chamber is the world's largest business federation, representing more than three million businesses and organizations of every size, sector and region.

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