GENEVA — World Trade Organization director general Pascal Lamy on Wednesday called for ministers from 35 to 40 trading powers, including the U.S., to meet in Geneva starting July 21 to try and clinch a long-sought deal in the troubled Doha round of talks.
But trade officials are skeptical over the chances an agreement can be reached because major hurdles stand in the way. These include political uncertainties in the U.S. with the upcoming presidential election and last year's nonrenewal by Congress of President Bush's trade promotion authority, divisions within the European Union and the tough stance taken by emerging nations such as Argentina, India and South Africa.
EU diplomats also said French President Nicolas Sarkozy might rally support to veto any deal that fell short on substantial market openings for industrial goods. Last week, Sarkozy criticized EU Trade Commissioner Peter Mandelson over his handling of the talks.
A spokesman for U.S. Trade Representative Susan Schwab said: "While there has been progress in recent days, in the weeks leading up to the ministerial meeting, there still is a lot of work and still important differences in agriculture, NAMA [non-agricultural market access] and services."
Lamy proposed the meeting during a closed-door session and diplomats in attendance said he thought there was more than a 50 percent chance that a breakthrough blueprint deal could be brokered on how to lower subsidies, tariffs and other barriers in agriculture and industrial goods. The talks have been stalled because industrial powers, such as the U.S. and the EU, and key emerging economies, such as Brazil and India, have not been able to resolve their differences in agriculture, where cotton subsidies have been a key sticking point, and industrial goods, including textiles and apparel.
@kith is moving into children’s. The men’s and women’s streetwear brand has launched Kidset, a Kith kids line located in New York at 64 Bleecker Street. The line includes mini versions of staple Kith pieces like the Astor bomber jacket and the Kith box logo sweatshirts, along with a wall that can display up to 120 pairs of shoes from @adidas, @newbalance, @timberland and more. #wwdfashion
“I just wanted to create this fully rounded character, but I do think what excited me most was just the opportunity to give a group of people representation that I feel needs it. I like to do characters in projects that stand for something and Karolina definitely does, so that was really exciting to me,” @ginnygardner says of her new role in @hulu’s “The Runaways.” Gardner plays Karolina Dean, a queer superhero, which is a rarity for @marvel. Read more about Gardner’s character on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @dandoperalski)
@heriethpaul and @gracebol have a moment on the @victoriassecret fashion show 2017. See every look from the runway on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: @giovanni_giannoni_photo) #wwdfashion #victoriassecret #VSFashionShow
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia