regulation of market access to services in line with the basic principles ofWTO - market access, national treatment (the
and most-favorednation treatment ( the
GATS provisions to some extent improve the market access for EUinsurance companies and banks (e.g. allowing 100% foreign ownership ofRussian insurance companies, insurance branching). However, accordingto the GATS rules, Russia (as other WTO Members) took advantage ofthe carve outs known as
“list of exemptions from MFN treatment”
“schedules of specific commitments”
which allow a Member to deviatefrom GATS rules and identify to which services sectors and under whatconditions the GATS rules and principles will not apply.
List of Exemptions from MFN Treatment
A WTO Member may maintain particular measures inconsistent with MFNtreatment, in principle, for not more than ten years and subject to reviewafter not more than five years. Russia did not specify any particularmeasures relating to the financial services sector that will not receive MFNtreatment. However, there is a general all-sector MFN exemption inrespect of measures based on any existing or future internationalagreements concerning investment activity or movement of naturalpersons supplying services.
Schedule of specific commitments
Russia has the following specific commitments schedule in respect offinancial services:
NT means that imports of goods and services must be treated no less favorably thanlike goods and services produced domestically.
MFN means that imports of goods and services originating from one member countrymust be treated no less favorably than imports of goods and services from any other country.
The latter applies to all parties of the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement signedbetween EU and Russia and also to CIS countries.