Photo courtesy of the Economy Ministry
MINSK, 28 July (BelTA) – A ceremony to close the seventh round of negotiations on a Belarusian-Chinese agreement on trade in services and on making investments took place in Minsk, the press service of the Belarusian Economy Ministry told BelTA.
After four days of negotiations the experts successfully ended negotiations on the essential part of the draft agreement and came up with answers to all the matters of debate. The sides fully agreed the chapters on investments and on the movement of private persons. A discussion about parameters of access to the market of services and investments was finished as well. A preliminary technical proofreading of the document took place.
After the closing ceremony heads of the delegations signed the relevant protocol. An agreement was reached on starting the intrastate reconciliation and intrastate procedures for signing the international agreement this year.
The Belarusian Economy Ministry explained that the Belarus-China agreement on trade in services and on making investments includes obligations concerning access to the market in over 110 sectors of services. The agreement stipulates massive obligations concerning access and protection of investments. They meet the highest standards of international treaty practice. Among other things the document covers intellectual property rights, movement of natural persons, competition, digital trade, small and medium entrepreneurship.
Deputy Director of the WTO Department of the Chinese Commerce Ministry Yusong Chen remarked that the Chinese side is confident that the agreement will give a new impulse to the advancement of Belarus-China partnership.
In turn, Head of the Central Office for Economic Integration of the Economy Ministry Marina Yezhova underlined that despite the fact that Belarus and China have different scales, regulations, approaches to negotiations and experience, they have managed to come to terms on a document, which contains hundreds of pages and covers a significant number of various matters.
Belarus and China have been working on the agreement on trade in services and on making investments since 2020. Since then seven rounds of negotiations have been held, including two offline rounds, as well as tens of intersession consultations. The ambitious document has been reconciled as a result. In turn, the document will create the foundation for advancing business cooperation between Belarus and China.