TNT – “Iraq and WTO News” Posted by Tishwash at TNT 1-15-2024

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Tishwash:  So are they in or not? 

Iraq returns to the World Trade Organization 14 years after its expulsion

Iraq is preparing for a major change in the trade file with the countries of the world and is preparing to exceed the limits set for Iraqi goods, with its return to the World Trade Organization 14 years after it was expelled as a result of its failure to adhere to the organization’s meetings.

The head of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s mission to the World Trade Organization/the Saudi Permanent Representative to the World Trade Organization and responsible for the file of Iraq’s accession to the World Trade Organization, Saqr al-Muqbel, visited Iraq today, Monday, and delivered a speech in which he reviewed the importance of joining the World Trade Organization.

Al-Muqbil said in a press conference followed by Al-Iqtisad News, “I find Iraq’s accession to be a serious message from Iraq to the whole world, that Iraq is continuing its path of engagement with the whole world,” adding: “I find myself among my loved ones and brothers to do everything we have for your participation.” “The Kingdom’s successful experience in joining the World Trade Organization.”

He explained, “The Kingdom joined the World Trade Organization in 2005, and our non-oil merchandise exports amounted to about 18 billion dollars, and exports have now reached 84 billion dollars with the world,” noting that “the Kingdom’s service exports alone amounted to about 11 billion dollars in 2005 and have now reached more than 34 billion dollars.

He pointed out that “these achievements depend on Iraq’s signals to join and accelerate its pace to find Iraq in its usual position and as one of the largest economies in the Arab region and the Middle East.”

For his part, the Iraqi Minister of Commerce, Atheer Al-Ghurairi, said, “Iraq is taking steps to return as a strong economic player by opening relations with Arab countries and all countries of the world,” noting that “today, within a year, we were able to finalize three files and submit them to the committee related to Iraq’s accession to the World Trade Organization.” global trade in goods and services.

He stated that “Iraq joined as an observer in the World Trade Organization in 2004, and in 2009 Iraq stopped meetings and reached the point of being removed from the organization, and last year 2023, through continuous work on that and with the help of Saudi Arabia and the head of the Saudi mission in the organization, Iraq returned as an observer to the organization.” Global trade, and we accomplished in one year the equivalent of more than 15 years’ work.”

Regarding the benefit of joining, Al-Ghurairi explained, “It means that the Iraqi economy enjoys any specifications enjoyed by world economies, but this does not replace the necessity of internal reform.”

He stated that “opening the doors to Iraqi goods and trade exchange through global controls will protect Iraq from entering the global market with its weight in the event that it fulfills its requirements and that our production is international and not local,” noting that “Iraqi goods are now not allowed to go outside certain borders, and joining is possible.” To reach the farthest country in the world   link 

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Tishwash:  The President of the Republic to a Saudi delegation: Iraq is keen to join the World Trade Organization

 The President of the Republic, Abdul Latif Jamal Rashid, received today, Monday, the Saudi Ambassador to Iraq, Abdul Aziz Al-Shammari, and the representative of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to the World Trade Organization, head of the team concerned with Iraq’s accession to the World Trade Organization, Saqr Al-Muqbel, and their accompanying delegation.

A statement from his office, a copy of which {Al-Furat News} received, stated: “At the beginning of the meeting, the Saudi ambassador conveyed the greetings of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, King of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to the president and their wishes to the Iraqi people for further progress and prosperity.” While Rashid conveyed to the ambassador his greetings to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques and to the Crown Prince, and his wishes to the Saudi people for further prosperity and development.

Irshid stressed, “Iraq’s keenness to join the organization by achieving the commercial and economic standards required in this regard,” praising “the role of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in bringing viewpoints closer and pushing towards establishing stability and peace in the region,” praising “the efforts made by the team concerned with Iraq’s accession to the WTO.”

International and its meetings with the National Committee for the purpose of accelerating the completion of this file and in a way that contributes to the development of the trade system and the achievement of stability and sustainable development. 

He pointed out “the importance of benefiting from the experience of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in this aspect,” referring to “the positive developments in Iraq that have had a positive impact on the lives of Iraqis as a whole,” stressing that “the government has attached importance to establishing security and stability, developing economic activity, and encouraging foreign investment in the country.” And to consolidate relations with neighboring countries and the world,” noting that “Iraq was an active member in most international organizations.” 

In turn, the Saudi ambassador affirmed the Kingdom’s keenness to support Iraq in international forums and stand by its side in enhancing security stability, development and progress in the economic and energy fields, noting that “Iraq is moving forward towards the process of reform, development and progress in various fields.”

For his part, Saqr Al-Muqbel reviewed the results of his meetings in Baghdad, which took place with the Iraqi National Committee for the Republic of Iraq’s accession to the World Trade Organization, expressing his “satisfaction with the steps taken by Iraq in order to implement the required standards, and affirming his country’s support for Iraq’s accession to the World Trade Organization.”

The head of the concerned team stated that “Iraq’s accession to the organization is a gain for the region and the world, and will contribute to developing and expanding the progress achieved in financial services and improving the foreign investment environment.” link 

The Minister of Commerce, Atheer Al-Ghurairi, announced today, Monday, the completion of three files related to Iraq’s accession to the World Trade Organization, while indicating that Iraq will be an influential player in the international economic system.

Al-Ghurairi said in a conference attended by the correspondent of the Iraqi News Agency (INA): “The visit of the head of the mission of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the head of the team concerned with Iraq’s accession to the World Trade Organization, Ambassador Saqr Abdullah Al-Muqbel, to Iraq is important and is a serious expression and signals that Iraq is continuing with its obligations according to the platform.”

 It is a solid government program whose steps are calculated through promising plans that have begun to bear fruit,” indicating “the importance of Iraq’s accession to the World Trade Organization, which comes through a working group in an international committee concerned with accession, which is the committee concerned with the accession of concerned countries to global trade, headed by the Ministry of Commerce and the head of the technical team is the ambassador.” “Known historically for seriousness, it is also a good sign of the development of relations and the sincerity of intentions of the

Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and its good initiatives as a people and government under the leadership of this team.”

He added, “The team will take real steps that will shorten the path to Iraq’s accession to the World Trade Organization and benefit from the advantages offered by this accession. It will be part of the organized group to enjoy the privileges. It is also a solid step essential to building a solid Iraqi economy whose steps began with the government program and the ministerial approach and will be completed by the hands of the Iraqis and with the help of Iraqis.” “Siblings.”

He stated that “what the team accomplished within one year after Iraq joined the World Trade Organization as an observer in 2004, the meetings and work of this team continued until 2009, but since that year this file has been disrupted and we have reached the expulsion and suspension of observer status from the World Trade Organization. However, it is Within the government program and ministerial platform, Iraq will return to being a strong economic player, as well as an important and positive international political player, and to open relations with Arab countries and all countries of the world.”

He stated that “the team was able, within one year, to complete three files and submit them to the committee for final negotiation and approval, including those related to the file of trade in goods and services, as well as plant health and other files,” pointing out that “with our selection to head the team, Saqr Abdullah Al-Muqbel, is that there is a new phase.” “For this team to perform positively.”

He stressed that “Iraq cannot be outside the international economic system, but rather it will be a player and influencer in it, and through reforms on the ground, the fruits of which our people will reap soon.”

He stressed that “the signs of these measures and improving the business and investment environment will bring great benefit to our people and the economy of our country.”   link