Letters, The Russian Federation and the WTO
Dear Ambassador Schwab:
The Russian Federation's accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO) would be an
important step forward for global world trade. As you seek to conclude negotiations between the
United States and the Russian Federation, the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) urges
you to ensure that Russia develops regulations and policies that provide for maximum market
access for U.S. food and agricultural products produced through modern agricultural
BIO represents more than 1,100 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state
biotechnology centers and related organizations across the United States and 31 other nations.
BIO members are involved in the research and development of health care, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products.
With Russia's accession to the WTO, the level of U.S. food and agriculture exports is expected to
increase meaningfully. Russia, however, continues to maintain regulations and policies that
impede trade in agricultural biotechnology products.
In general, Russia should implement a science-based regulatory and labeling system to ensure
timely approval of agricultural biotechnology products, and should not impose mandatory
labeling of such products unless warranted by the science. Further, the City of Moscow recently
announced a ban on the serving of biotechnology food in schools, which is inconsistent with the
WTO Agreement on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures.
We appreciate the efforts that your negotiators have made to try to resolve these issues.
Satisfactory resolution prior to conclusion of bilateral negotiations, however, is critical to ensure
that U.S. farmers and food processors can truly benefit from the gains achieved in the market
Thank you for your consideration.
President and CEO