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
End production: 19/12/2012 First transmission: 19/12/2012
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.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||Handshake between 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, at the Europe Commission in Brussels
||Soundbite by Karel De Gucht (in ENGLISH): Today's signature is an important milestone. I am confident that other World Trade Organization (WTO) members recognise the importance of this deal. Our close cooperation in this respect has to be maintained. We take note of your commitments to continue negotiations with full consideration of the EU position and can reassure you of our support for those negotiations.
||Soundbite by Mirko Šarović (in BOSNIAN) saying that today's signature of this bilateral agreement is an important step and they are grateful to the EU for its support towards their mutual goal of the accession to the EU. They are decided to continue further discussions within the dialogues.
||Cutaway of flags
||Soundbite by Mirko Šarović (in BOSNIAN) saying that he is optimistic and confident that in the coming months Bosnia and Herzegovina will become member of this important family.
||Mirko Šarović and Karel De Gucht signing the agreement (2 shots)
||Mirko Šarović and Karel De Gucht shaking hands
||Soundbite by Karel De Gucht (in ENGLISH): So I hope that we can work together in the same spirit and make sure that you are in the next number of the countries that will become members of the WTO, hopefully in the course of next year.