4 Dec 2013 – Yemen’s WTO membership approved

Immediately after the heads of delegations’ meeting, members formally accepted Yemen as a new WTO member — its “accession” to the WTO.

At a ceremony to celebrate the decision, Mr Azevêdo congratulated the Yemen government for the domestic reforms it is undertaking after 13 years to finally become a WTO member.

“We celebrate accessions both because of what it means for the individual country, but also because of what it means for this organization,” he said

The Republic of Yemen will be the 35th least developed country in the WTO.

“This group makes up a fifth of the whole WTO membership. It is an important constituency — and, as we have seen in recent days, it is one that is increasingly making its voice heard,” said the Director-General.

Yemen’s Industry and Trade Minister Sa’aduddin Bin Taleb expressed his country’s gratitude and excitement at finally becoming a WTO member.

“Sometimes things change for countries and fortunes change. But the very essence of a country and the history and the civilisation remains. Ours has been trading for the last at least five or six hundred years, in fact, since the spice route,” he told the assembled ministries from the WTO membership. “We aim to take back that road again and to connect with everybody in the world. … I hope that after a few months, we will have a new Yemen born.”

The Yemeni Parliament will have six months, until 2 June 2014, to ratify its accession package. It will then inform the WTO and 30 days later it will officially become a member – WTO News