Russian trout farmers to benefit from WTO accession despite more competition

May 8, 2007 16:34

Lower customs and tariff protection of the domestic market to result from Russia's accession to the World Trade Organization can be damaging for trout farmers of Karelia (Russia's republic bordering on Finland), but, on the other hand, membership in WTO will open up new opportunities for export.

According to press-service of Karelia's government, draft figures of import duties for fresh, frozen fish and fish fillets are indicating a decrease from 10% to 15% during the next 4-5 years. Karelian producers of trout are already facing strong competition from the Norwegian products and when Russia accedes to WTO the problem is supposed to aggravate even further. In order to prevent the situation the republic's trout producers are advised to unite and prepare a feasibility study to be forwarded to the nation's Ministry of Economic Development and Trade so that it would strengthen measures to protect the domestic market of farmed fish.

Export

In the meantime, fairly large volumes of Karelian trout products have been exported to the international markets. Export-oriented industries and companies will only benefit from Russia's membership in WTO as the conditions for their access to foreign markets will grow better and they will be able to use the WTO routines in solving trade disputes.

Therefore, the best way for the national fishery industry to prevent negative consequences from the nation's entry to WTO is to diversify into international trade thus avoiding potential problems connected with competition from imported products on the domestic market.

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