Most of Uzbeks, the government and parliament members have come to a consensus on the need to join the World Trade Organization. There is no consensus over the EAEU membership. The First Deputy Chairman of the Senate Sodiq Safoev announced during his visit to the United States.
A government delegation of Uzbekistan headed by the Foreign Minister Kamilov visited the United States on November 15-22 and held the regular Uzbek-American talks.
During the visit, on November 17, the First Deputy Chairman of the Senate of the Oliy Majlis Sodiq Safoev at the Atlantic Council in Washington met with the chief US diplomat for Central Asia Jonathan Henick.
According to TASS, during the meeting they discussed Uzbekistan's membership in the World Trade Organization and the Eurasian Economic Union.
“WTO membership is a top priority for Uzbekistan, and we are grateful to the United States for cooperation in the process of joining this organization. Last week, successful negotiations took place between Uzbekistan Deputy PM Sardor Umurzakov and the U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. We have made sure once again that the United States supports us,” Sodiq Safoev said.
According to him, a number of experts in Uzbekistan are worried that membership in the WTO "will have a negative impact on the willingness of business to compete on a global scale." At the same time, Safoev noted that “the majority of the population, as well as the government and parliament, share the opinion on the need to join the WTO.
“We are considering whether joining the EAEU will undermine the independence of foreign trade policy, the position of small and medium-sized businesses in front of more experienced EAEU members. This issue is still open,” he said.
In turn, Jonathan Henick reminded that the U.S. supports Uzbekistan in the accession to WTO. The WTO is a large-scale multi-year organization, and the EAEU is still a young and relatively smaller association.
"We believe that Uzbekistan should make a decision based on its interests," said the U.S. chief diplomat for Central Asia.
We remind you that in April of this year, the Legislative Chamber voted for Uzbekistan’s joining the EAEU as an observer state. 86 out of 132 deputies voted for, 32 - against, and 14 - abstained.
In July, the fourth meeting of the joint working group on Uzbekistan's membership in the WTO was held. The third meeting of this working group took place in 2005. Now Uzbekistan is preparing for bilateral negotiations with the WTO member states.