BRAZIL Negotiators meet on global trade, make little progress on free zone
SAO PAULO, Brazil (AP) -- Top trade negotiators met Sunday in a push to break down global trade barriers but made little progress in an effort to create a free trade zone covering the European Union and four South American countries.
The meetings were taking place on the sidelines of a 180-nation United Nations forum on trade and development bringing together representatives of the world's richest and poorest countries in Sao Paulo, Brazil's financial and industrial capital.
Developing nations renewed calls for better access to the markets of the wealthier economies at the 11th session of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, or UNCTAD. But they also faced pressure to reduce their own trade barriers.
In a move to break an impasse over agricultural subsidies in developed countries, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Zoellick met with Brazilian Foreign Minister Celso Amorim, Australian Trade Minister Mark Vaile, EU Trade Commissioner Pascal Lamy and Indian Commerce and Industry Minister Kamal Nath.
They said they made progress but still need to resolve many technical details ahead of a July deadline in the stalled Doha round of World Trade Organization talks aimed at slashing subsidies, tariffs and other barriers to global commerce.