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10 May 2012

Russia’s fishing companies excited about WTO

In past posts I touched prospects for Russian fish business in the WTO, more of it today.

First and foremost, Russia’s Fisheries Commission endorsed the agreement on Russia's accession to the WTO and considers participation in this organization necessary for the fishery complex development and involvement of Russian fishing and fish processing enterprises in international market.
Representatives of Russian fish businesses filed a request seeking to abolish export duties on seafood and zero custom duties on equipment imported to Russia for the fishing fleet and fish facilities modernization.
Another matter that worries Russian businessmen is growth of volumes of imported products processed from salmon and herring by foreign manufacturers. In their view, this trend can be dangerous to domestic fishing companies. Therefore it was proposed to apply some protective measures in order to favor to Russian fish producers, whose products become less competitive in the domestic market due to support for foreign manufacturers. Good reason for these statements is the scandal with the ban for Norwegian salmon imports. "Unfortunately, even detection of bacterial contamination will not lead to immediate ban of all import, and the Norwegians would argue that the Russian labs are wrong, and Russian standards are too strict, etc. The action plan should be as simple as a fish-hook: a warning and a temporary ban. But I assure that price for salmon will not rise since the Russian market is too tasty for the Norwegians”, said  chairman of the Sub-Commission on Fisheries and Aquaculture German Zverev.
And, finally, it was recommended to stop increasing seafood catching quota for foreign fishing companies in the Russia’s exclusive economic zone.
As a bottom-line, Russia’s joining to WTO promises to bring some good and bad news both for importers and exporters. I will be following this trend and supply you with news. Comments are welcome!


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