5 Dec 2011

Samoa promises WTO safe cars

6:24 am on 5 December 2011

Samoa has promised the World Trade Organisation it will lift its current import ban on cars more than 12 years old and set up a vehicle safety inspection programme.

The WTO says it wants to accelerate Samoa's integration into the world economy and offer a more transparent environment for trade and foreign investment.

Samoa has five years to make sure all cars are safe to drive.

But it has only six months to make sure owners of left-hand drive vehicles, still in use after the road switch in 2009, are observing the new right-hand drive rules properly.

Samoa has also pledged to allow left-hand drive vehicles back into the country within the next two years under special circumstances and related to specific uses.

The move to join the WTO has also led to Samoa lifting a ban on high-fat turkey tails.

Samoa should accede to WTO membership later this month.