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World Trade Organization (WTO)

World Trade Organization (WTO) is an international organization representing institutional and legal framework of the multilateral trading system in the area of customs and trade in goods, services and trade-related aspects of intellectual property.

It started operations on 1 January 1995, with the entry into force of the Agreement, signed in Marrakesh. The successor to the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), which was created after the Second World War and one of the youngest international organizations. Over 47 years, until 1994, and through four rounds of negotiations, the GATT was a truly powerful and prosperous multilateral trading system, which in 1995 evolved into the World Trade Organization (WTO).

WTO rules and agreements are the result of the Uruguay Round (1986 - 1994), which defined the rules relating to trade in services, certain aspects of intellectual property rights, dispute resolution and examination of trade policy. All this together makes a set of 60 general agreement and "to-do list" that assumes each country in certain areas, such as height tariff rates and open market for services. Each country receives guarantees that its exporters to be treated correctly by the established rules on the markets of other countries. Also, the country is obliged to provide access and operations by the precise conditions of other members in your market.

The WTO system is applied treatment "most favored nation", in which each member treats all the other members equally, as a "most-favored" trading partners. By strictly determined conditions are allowed certain exceptions to this principle. Countries can conclude a free trade agreement that provides preferential treatment to other signatories and does not apply to goods originating outside the group of the signatory countries. The country also can set up barriers on products from countries that are considered to trade unfairly. In a limited number of cases may be allowed unequal relationship in the services sector.

The basic principles of the WTO are:

the principle of "national treatment" which is based on providing equal treatment of foreign and domestic goods or services and Service provider or between foreign and domestic holders of intellectual property rights,
the principle of transparency in trade policies of WTO members,
the principle of reducing trade barriers,
the principle of promoting fair competition,
the principle of preventing arbitrary placement of barriers,
the principle of development and economic reforms.
Today, the WTO makes 159 members and covers over 97% of world trade. Membership in the WTO is one of the key steps of integrating the country into the modern international economic relations and at the same time an important element of support for the process of internal economic reforms.

Main advantages of WTO membership are as follows:

Maintaining peace,
Resolving disputes in a peaceful manner and konstrukivan,
The system based on rules, not the power,
Reduced cost of living,
Greater choice and better quality goods and services,
Foreign trade exchange increased revenues,
Shop stimulate economic growth and job creation,
The basic principles make the system economically more efficient and reduce costs,
The system protects governments from narrow interests,
The fight against corruption.
On the 8th Ministerial Conference of the WTO held from 15 - 17 December 2011 signed a Protocol on the Accession of Montenegro to the WTO, and the Law on Ratification of the Protocol on the Accession of Montenegro to the WTO Montenegrin parliament ratified after 30 days, or 29 April 2012, Montenegro officially became a full member 154.

Montenegro, among other things, a commitment to privatize state-owned enterprises and publish annual reports on privatization. It also undertook to apply price control measures in line with WTO rules.

Montenegro's membership in the WTO is the obligation of further liberalization of the national trade regime, ensuring a transparent and predictable environment for both domestic and foreign companies.

Manufacturers of Montenegro but are exposed to global competition, and membership in the WTO will significantly increase this "exposure". Since more than 80% of total merchandise transactions Montenegro implemented with the countries of the European Union and the CEFTA with which already has a liberal trade and the application of WTO rules, changes can be expected to trade with the United States, Japan, China, Turkey, Canada and other countries. Trade with these countries performed to WTO membership on MFN treatment (except Turkey).

Membership in the WTO is filled with important condition for encouraging investment that will bring the necessary capital, knowledge and technology, expand and strengthen distribution channels, to facilitate the adoption and implementation of internationally accepted standards and safety requirements, establish conditions conducive to business (rule of law, effective procedures, transparency , predictability, stability), and open foreign markets for goods and services.

The part relating to market access for goods, according to the commitments, harmonized customs tariff of Montenegro to List ispregovaranih concessions and started with effect from 1 May 2012.

A list of concessions for goods defined in accordance with the following principles:

the basis for defining binding rate was applicable customs burden;
proposed binding rates for sensitive and less sensitive products were at a higher level than the current;
that the negotiations for membership in the WTO "matched" with the implementation of the SAA, one of the criteria in order to define the binding rate was the actual customs tariff of the EU, as well as concessions that have already been granted EU;
indicator was and trade exchanges with foreign countries. Bearing in mind that the most important volume of trade Montenegro achieved with the European Union and signatories of CEFTA 2006 with whom he already reached a high level of liberalization of commodity markets, a number of binding rate is reduced compared to the currently applied rates;
defined phase adjustment for a number of tariff rates (4-10 years).
List of concessions in goods is a binding document which defines the customs duties over which country in the future will not increase its tariff protection. The average rate that will apply Montenegro shall not exceed 5.1%. Defined in the phase adjustment for a number of tariff rates. The transition period ranges from 4-10 years.

From 2445 positions that belong to agriculture, the rates are reduced by 150 positions in the first year and by 1000 the position was defined snižavenje rate and the transition period of 4-10 years, while the tariff rates for those headings relating to sensitive products and for which she was prescribed a combined rate (ad valorem + specific duties) are limited to max. of 50%. This has not been the case, except in a situation where imported fruits and vegetables in very sporadic cases.

Of the 150 positions, which make up only 6% of tariff items relating to agriculture and food production (first 24 heads of customs tariffs) 4 positions (2 pertaining to horse meat and 2 relating to the ethyl alcohol) were reduced by 30% to 10%, 4 positions related mainly concentrates juices were reduced from 20% to 5%. A 10% reduction was formed in 9 positions, to 8% in 3 positions and other positions were reduced in the first year of below 5%.

A list of specific commitments for services is made on the basis of the current Montenegrin legislation. Negotiations on specific commitments on trade in services negotiations entailed restrictions on market access for foreign service providers, as well as talks about the limitations of national treatment. These negotiations were bilateral and took place in 12 sectors and 154 subsectors of services.

Of the six possible forms of market access restrictions defined in Article XVI of the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS), Montenegro applies only three relating to: limit the number of providers, the limit on the allowable types of legal entity and restriction of foreign capital.

As a full member of the WTO Montenegro has an obligation to inform other members about any changes to legislation that treat the area of trade, as well as the obligation to submit annual reports on privatization, as well as reports on export subsidies in agriculture and industry. Membership in the WTO provides an opportunity for active participation of Montenegro in the work of all bodies of the WTO.

www.wto.org