GENEVA — The World Trade Organization approved Ukraine's entry package on Tuesday, paving the way for the former Soviet-bloc nation to join the global trade body after 14 years of talks.
"Ukraine crossed the line in the process of integration to the global economic and trade environment," Ukraine President Victor Yushchenko told reporters after initialing the agreement.
Yushchenko said WTO entry would have a cumulative effect on the economy of Ukraine, boost the consumption of its 45.5 million citizens by 10 percent, generate a 1.7 percent increase in gross domestic product and boost foreign direct investment by $3.5 billion.
Trade liberalization efforts encompassed in the accord are also expected to increase annual exports by 10 percent, or $4 billion, he noted. In 2006, Ukraine's merchandise exports totaled $38.3 billion and its imports totaled $45 billion, according to a WTO report.
The nation's average tariff for industrial goods is 4.95 percent, according to the WTO, but in some industrial product lines is as high as 25 percent. But, upon joining the WTO, Ukraine has agreed to scrap all duties for a range of industrial goods, including certain chemicals, fabrics and yarns. This includes staple viscose fibers, polyesters and certain woven fabrics containing high tenacity yarn.
Some kinds of bonded wool and fine animal hair fabrics will have duties set at 5 percent, and cut corduroy and terry toweling will have 8 percent tariffs. A 12 percent tariff has been set for many apparel items, including overcoats, anoraks, women's and girls' suits, jackets and blazers, cotton or synthetic dresses, wool or cotton trousers, men's or boys cotton shirts, T-shirts and pajamas.
U.S. Trade Representative Susan Schwab said, "The inclusion in the WTO of such a large, fast-growing economy will benefit U.S. businesses, workers, farmers, ranchers and consumers. We look forward to building a broader, deeper trade and investment relationship with Ukraine."
Ukraine will become a WTO member 30 days after it has notified the global body that it has ratified the entry package. If it completes its ratification ahead of Cape Verde, which successfully finished its entry talks on Dec. 18, it will become the 152nd WTO member.
“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
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
Sneaker reselling app @goat’s latest exhibit, "The Greatest: New York," tells the story of New York's sneaker culture. To celebrate the exhibit, an intimate crowd gathered on Thursday night at the pop-up gallery space, located at Platform in Culver City, to hear guest speaker and illustrator @esymai talk about her own rise in streetwear and women in the business. "For me I'm just someone who is creative. I like to create things," said Chang. #wwdfashion
Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast