As Foreign Minister Borys Tarasyuk told a Thursday press conference in Kyiv, the Verkhovna Rada has not yet ratified the GUAM Statute, so the GUAM Secretariat will start functioning not earlier than January 1, 2007.

As far as the organisation's budget is concerned, it has been endorsed, but will take effect only after the GUAM member nations' budgets have been adopted, Mr Tarasyuk noted.

He stated the GUAM's tentative budget at 500,000 USD.

Commenting on likely candidates for the GUAM Secretary General, Borys Tarasyuk said the member-nations had agreed to appoint Georgian First Deputy Foreign Minister Valeriy Chechelashvili, once BSEC Secretary General, to the post.


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