On 10 July 2012 members of the State Duma voted for ratification of the Protocol on Russia’s accession to the WTO (“Protocol”).
The matter had previously been referred to the Constitutional Court in order to check whether the Protocol complies with Russian Constitution, revealing the result of 18 year –old negotiations in the process.
In particular members stressed the following points:
- In violation of the procedure for the submission of documents the Protocol was not discussed by subjects of the Russian Federation.
- The Protocol does not comply with the Russian Constitution and, in particular, it limits access to qualified legal assistance and the principle of settling disputes only through the courts (WTO disputes are settled by international tribunals).
The Constitutional Court stated that members’ comments were economic and political and did not have any legal basis.
Nevertheless, as of 09 July 2012 the Constitutional Court approved the Protocol in accordance with Russian Constitution.
More detailed information on how the accession to the WTO influences different spheres of business in Russia can be found in previous alerts distributed by CMS.
[Decree of the Constitutional Court of Russian Federation dated 09 July 2012 N 17- П “On the examination of the constitutionality of the Russian Federation’s international agreement – the Protocol on Russia’s accession to the Marrakesh Agreement establishing the World Trade Organisation” http://www.garant.ru/hotlaw/federal/407674/#review
Information on the Bill N 89689-6 “On ratification of the Protocol on Russia’s accession to the Marrakesh Agreement establishing the World Trade Organization as of 15 April 1994” http://asozd2.duma.gov.ru/main.nsf/%28Spravka%29?OpenAgent&RN=89689-6&02]