Azerbaijan in­ter­ested to do free ser­vices trade with CIS coun­tries

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Azerbaijan is in­ter­ested in join­ing the work­ing group de­vel­op­ing an agree­ment on free trade in ser­vices among the coun­tries of the Com­mon­wealth of In­de­pen­dent States (CIS), the CIS Ex­ec­u­tive Com­mit­tee told Trend.

Azerbaijan is in­ter­ested in join­ing the work­ing group de­vel­op­ing an agree­ment on free trade in ser­vices among the coun­tries of the Com­mon­wealth of In­de­pen­dent States (CIS), the CIS Ex­ec­u­tive Com­mit­tee told Trend.

The Work­ing Group de­vel­op­ing the draft Agree­ment on Free Trade in Ser­vices was formed by the Ex­ec­u­tive Com­mit­tee upon the de­ci­sion of the Heads of Govern­ment of the CIS coun­tries dur­ing the sign­ing of the Treaty on a Free-Trade Area dated Oc­to­ber 18, 2011.

"Ac­cord­ing to the draft Agree­ment on Free Trade in Ser­vices, which is de­vel­oped within the CIS, its pro­vi­sions will be ap­plied not only to trade in ser­vices, but also to the cre­ation and im­ple­men­ta­tion of ac­tiv­ity of ser­vice provider com­pa­nies, as well as in­vest­ments," the ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee said.

"As is known, the in­vest­ment flows de­ter­mine the flows of goods."

The agree­ment will pro­mote not only the free ex­change of la­bor re­sources. It will create fa­vor­able con­di­tions for in­vest­ment by cit­i­zens of some CIS coun­tries in the ter­ri­tory of other CIS coun­tries and en­sure the pro­tec­tion of these in­vest­ments.

The rep­re­sen­ta­tives of the coun­tries in­volved in the agree­ment are work­ing on the draft doc­u­ment [ex­cept for Ukraine, which has not par­tic­i­pated in the meet­ings of the work­ing group since 2014], the ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee said.

"The im­por­tance of the ser­vice sec­tor is great," the ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee said. "From a half to twothirds of the GDP of the CIS coun­tries ac­count for ser­vices. Trade in ser­vices is much less ex­posed to ex­ter­nal in­flu­ences than trade in goods, which is im­por­tant. If trade in goods de­creases dur­ing cri­sis, trade in ser­vices only slows down its growth."

Ac­cord­ing to the Azer­bai­jani State Sta­tis­tics Com­mit­tee, about a third of the country's GDP ac­count for ser­vices.

Ac­cord­ing to the Azer­bai­jani Cen­tral Bank, ex­port of ser­vices amounted to $1.16 bil­lion in Jan­uaryMarch 2018. At the same time, non­res­i­dents ren­dered ser­vices worth $1.66 bil­lion to Azer­bai­jani res­i­dents.

Ear­lier, the CIS Ex­ec­u­tive Com­mit­tee sent an in­vi­ta­tion to Azerbaijan and Uzbek­istan to join the work on the doc­u­ment. The re­cent meet­ing of the work­ing group on the draft agree­ment was held on April 27, 2018. Azerbaijan and Uzbek­istan also took part in this meet­ing.

The next meet­ing of ex­perts of the work­ing group will be held in Moscow on July 4-5.

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