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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — The requests for lavish gifts were frequent. Jonnie Williams — the star witness in a corruption trial against the former Virginia governor and his wife — was being asked for everything from a joy ride in his Ferrari to stock in the company he led.
By David Brunnstrom and Tom Miles NEW DELHI/GENEVA (Reuters) - The World Trade Organization failed on Thursday to reach a deal to standardise customs rules, which would have been the first global trade reform in two decades but was blocked by India's demands for concessions on agricultural stockpiling. "We have not been able to find a solution that would allow us to bridge that gap," WTO Director-General Roberto Azevedo told trade diplomats in Geneva just two hours before the final deadline for a deal. WTO ministers had already agreed the global reform of customs procedures known as "trade facilitation" last December, but it needed to be put into the WTO rule book by July 31. Most diplomats saw that as rubber-stamping a unique success in the WTO's 19 year history, which according to some estimates would add $1 trillion and 21 million jobs to the world economy, so they were shocked when India unveiled its veto.