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27 April 2022, 09:20

Belarus slams politicization of WTO accession talks as unacceptable

MINSK, 27 April (BelTA) - Politicization of the negotiations on the accession of new members to the WTO is incompatible with the principles of creating a barrier-free system of international trade, Belarusian Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Yuri Ambrazevich said at the 2022 ECOSOC Forum on Financing for Development, BelTA has learned.

“The world is facing the task not only to restore the pre-pandemic economic development pace, but also to overcome new geopolitical challenges and in general to ensure sustainability and subsequent economic growth focused on improving the living standards of ordinary people,” said the deputy minister. “We believe that the task of today's meeting should be the reaffirmation of the parties' commitments to the Addis Ababa Action Agenda on financing sustainable development.”

He stressed that, unfortunately, the actions of many developed countries, which are major international donors, contradict their commitments and undermine the global vision of achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.

“The commitments to promoting sustainable development made in Addis Ababa must be fulfilled, and this pertains not only to the least developed countries but also to middle-income states. In this regard, the use of political pretexts to curtail projects through the World Bank and other international financial institutions is in direct violation of donor countries' international commitments,” stressed the deputy minister. “Restriction of membership of or cooperation with certain countries in international organizations, including restriction of their access to grants and technical assistance projects, is also a flagrant violation by donor countries of their international obligations and specifically the principle of non-discrimination.”

According to Yuri Ambrazevich, the obvious politicization of the negotiation process for the accession of new members to the World Trade Organization is incompatible with the principles of a barrier-free system of international trade, one of the drivers of global development.

The scale of proactive unilateral economic sanctions by individual states is unprecedented.

“These are not just brakes, but sticks in the wheels of sustainable development. Everyone in this room should know that the sanctions imposed by the EU and the United States against the export of Belarusian potash fertilizers and the illegal ban on their transit through the territory of Lithuania have an extremely negative impact on global food security. These decisions of the USA, the EU and particularly Lithuania, taking into account the 20% share of Belarus in the world market of potash fertilizers, are the main reason for a record rise in prices for fertilizers and related foodstuffs and will cause a predictable famine in the least developed countries. The continuation of mindless policies of restrictions, exclusions, discrimination against states and sanctions against politically undesirable governments will undermine the international community's efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals,” he continued.

“We call on UN members to prevent donor countries from usurping the right of other states to determine their own path to sustainable development under the threat of funding cuts,” the Belarusian deputy minister of foreign affairs concluded.

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