Next and probably the last round of the Swiss-mediated talks this year between Georgia and Russia on Moscow’s bid to join the World Trade Organization (WTO) will be held on October 7-8, Georgian Deputy Foreign Minister Davit Jalagania said on Monday.
“Unfortunately we do not expect any radical changes in Russia’s inflexible position and it is not expected that Russia will demonstrate flexibility in respect of those issues, which are so important for us,” Jalagania said at a press conference. “Still we hope and are ready for a dialogue; Georgia has never questioned its commitment towards discussions and dialogue.”
He, however, also said that if Georgia’s outstanding concerns remain unaddressed by the Russian side “to say it bluntly we won’t be able to help to resolve the issue of Russia’s WTO accession at this round of negotiations and in the best case it is probably expected that the dialogue will continue next year.”
Tbilisi insists on transparency of trade across the disputed borders in breakaway Abkhazia and South Ossetia through exchange of advance cargo information and international monitoring of border crossing points.