Moscow, July 22 (IANS/RIA Novosti)Russian President Vladimir Putin signed Saturday a federal law that authorises the protocol for Russia's accession to the World Trade Organisation (WTO), the Kremlin said.
The protocol on Russia's accession to the Marrakesh Agreement, the foundation document for the WTO, was signed in Geneva Dec 16, 2011, following nearly 18 years of negotiations.
The document which has earlier been ratified by both houses of Russian parliament, stipulates that Russia, as a WTO member state, will undertake to comply with the obligations of the Marrakesh Agreement.
The transition period to liberalisation of access to Russia's markets is two to three years, but this is extended to five to seven years for markets requiring more protection such as the automobile industry and agriculture, agricultural machinery production and light industry.
The Russian opposition has claimed on many occasions that Russia's accession to the WTO was detrimental to Russia's national sovereignty and security and could ruin whole sectors of the domestic economy.
The Highest Court, however, ruled legitimate the country's WTO accession protocol July 10.