16 Nov 2018 13:20

Some WTO members' wish to operate only in narrow formats may unbalance int'l trade - Prikhodko

MOSCOW. Nov 16 (Interfax) - Trade wars negatively affect the global economy and exacerbate businesses' concerns, First Deputy Chief of the Government Staff Sergei Prikhodko said, describing some World Trade Organization (WTO) members' readiness tackle issues only in closed-access formats as a dangerous tendency.

"We are convinced that regional trade agreements should seamlessly complement universal norms of the multilateral trade system rather than substitute for them. Some WTO members' eagerness to tackle particular external economic tasks only in narrow and closed-access formats is a dangerous tendency that could unbalance international trade," Prikhodko told reporters ahead of Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev's visit to Papua New Guinea for an Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit.

Later today, Medvedev will arrive in Port Moresby, which will host the summit on November 17-18.

"So-called trade wars and the increase in the number of unjustified protectionist barriers negatively affect the global economy and cause the concerns of businesses to grow," Prikhodko said.

Countries need to look for constructive solutions to key issues, including by updating the agenda of talks and adjusting the WTO's principles and methods, he said.

"Russia is taking part in these collective efforts. We're counting on close cooperation with our partners," Prikhodko said.