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Problems on Kyrgyz-Kazakh border voiced at WTO meeting in Geneva

The delegation of Kyrgyzstan led by the Deputy Minister of Economy Almaz Sazbakov took part in the meeting of the World Trade Organization (WTO) Council for Trade in Goods in Geneva (Switzerland). Permanent Mission of the Kyrgyz Republic to Switzerland reported.

According to it, the agenda on the request of Kyrgyzstan included a separate issue on the situation on the Kyrgyz-Kazakh border.

The delegation of Kyrgyzstan informed the participants of the meeting about the situation at the state border checkpoints with Kazakhstan and drew attention to the artificial barriers created by the Kazakh side to the cargo carriers moving from / to Kyrgyzstan via Kazakhstan. The delegation pointed to the violation by Kazakhstan of the fundamental principles of WTO, in particular, the principles of freedom of transit and non-discrimination.

The Kyrgyz side has presented specific figures reflecting the idle time of trucks at the border, the length of the queues of vehicles, and the economic losses that, according to the International Monetary Fund, have already reached more than $ 200 million, which will cause Kyrgyzstan’s economic growth decrease by 0.3 percent.

«It was specially noted that such actions of the neighboring state are purposefully carried out only with regard to the cargo coming from Kyrgyzstan and to Kyrgyzstan,» the message says.

In its turn, the delegation of Kazakhstan practically repeated the position that was many times voiced during the meetings of regional organizations, emphasizing that the tightening of inspections is connected with the need to combat «smuggling», counterfeit goods, sanitary and phytosanitary requirements.

The delegation of the Kyrgyz Republic responded to each argument presented by the Kazakh side by detailed description of violations of specific rules of the World Trade Organization and urged WTO states to give an objective assessment of the situation, and Kazakhstan — to strictly fulfill its obligations within WTO.

The delegations of Korea, Japan and Moldova in their speeches called for an early settlement of the situation on the border through bilateral consultations.

Recall, since October 10, Kazakhstan has strengthened control on the sections of the Kazakh-Kyrgyz and Kazakh-Russian border.