EU/Bosnia and Herzegovina signing ceremony with the participation of Karel De Gucht and Mirko Šarović, Minister for Foreign Trade and Economic Relations of Bosnia and Herzegovina
On 19 December 2012, Karel De Gucht, Member of the EC in charge of Trade, and Mirko Šarović, Minister for Foreign Trade and Economic Relations of Bosnia and Herzegovina, signed a deal on Bosnia and Herzegovina’s accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO). This agreement is a key step for Bosnia and Herzegovina's path to becoming a Member of the international trade body. Accession to the WTO is expected to make a lasting contribution to the process of economic reform and sustainable development in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The bilateral deal provides for the lowering of tariffs for trade in goods and for the opening of services markets upon accession. These commitments will be then embodied in the future Protocol of Accession of Bosnia and Herzegovina to the WTO.
Bosnia and Herzegovina applied for WTO membership on 11 May 1999. The WTO Working Party on its accession was established on 15 July 1999. In order to become a WTO member, Bosnia and Herzegovina must complete bilateral negotiations with interested WTO members and obtain the endorsement of this Working Party at multilateral level.