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Amid gathering trade war clouds, PM Modi calls out protectionism at SCO

PM Modi's remarks come days after US President Donald Trump terminated India’s benefits under the Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) scheme and amid a raging trade war between the US and China.

Written by Shubhajit Roy | New Delhi | Updated: June 15, 2019 6:55:51 am
pm modi, modi bishkek summit, sco summit, sco summit bishkek, modi at sco summit, modi on trade wars, modi on unilateralism, modi on protectionism, modi in bishkek, us india trade war, indian economy sco summit, indian express news Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi attends a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan June 13, 2019. Sputnik/Grigory Sysoyev/Kremlin via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS – THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY.

As India decided to impose retaliatory import duties on 29 US items, Prime Minister Narendra Modi targeted trade protectionism at the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation summit Friday and underscored the need for a rules-based, anti-discriminatory and all-inclusive WTO-centred multilateral trading system.

At the summit in Bishkek, Modi said unilateralism and protectionism has not benefited anyone and that economic cooperation is the basis of “our people’s future”. “We need a rule-based, transparent, anti-discriminatory, open and all inclusive WTO-centred multilateral trading system so that the interests of every country specially the developing ones can be taken care of,” he said.

Read | Almonds to apples, Centre plans retaliatory tariffs on 29 US items

His remarks come days after US President Donald Trump terminated India’s benefits under the Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) scheme and amid a raging trade war between the US and China. With Chinese President Xi Jinping looking on, Modi said that India is committed to making a favourable environment for economic cooperation between SCO member countries. After meeting with Modi earlier, Xi had said that India and China should uphold free trade, and multilateralism.

The Bishkek declaration adopted by the SCO countries, which included India and China, said that the situation in global politics and economy remains “turbulent and tense”, and the process of economic globalisation is being “hindered” by the growing unilateral protectionist policies and other challenges in international trade.

pm modi, modi bishkek summit, sco summit, sco summit bishkek, modi at sco summit, modi on trade wars, modi on unilateralism, modi on protectionism, modi in bishkek, us india trade war, indian economy sco summit, indian express news (From left) Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, Chinese President Xi Jinping, Kyrgyz President Sooronbay Jeenbekov, Russian President Vladimir Putin, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan, Tajik President Emomali Rahmon and Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev in Bishkek, Friday. AP

The SCO leaders stress on the importance of further improving the architecture of global economic governance, and deepening cooperation to build a transparent, predictable and stable environment for the development of trade, economic and investment cooperation through the consistent strengthening of the multilateral trading system based on the rules and regulations of the WTO, and through opposition to the fragmentation of global trade and trade protectionism in all its forms, it said.

“They believe that unilateral protectionist actions in violation of WTO rules and regulations undermine the multilateral trade system and threaten the world economy and trade,” it said.

Read | Balancing the poles

The member states also stressed on the importance of further deepening cooperation in order to bring forth an open world economy, consistently strengthen an open, inclusive, transparent, non-discriminatory and rule-based multilateral trading system, maintain the authority and effectiveness of WTO rules, and to prevent any unilateral protectionist actions in international and regional trade. country specially the developing ones can be taken care of,” he said.

His remarks come days after US President Donald Trump terminated India’s benefits under the Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) scheme and amid a raging trade war between the US and China. With Chinese President Xi Jinping looking on, Modi said that India is committed to making a favourable environment for economic cooperation between SCO member countries. After meeting with Modi earlier, Xi had said that India and China should uphold free trade, and multilateralism.

Read | A few moments in nine hours: How Pakistan got a very cold shoulder

The Bishkek declaration adopted by the SCO countries, which included India and China, said that the situation in global politics and economy remains “turbulent and tense”, and the process of economic globalisation is being “hindered” by the growing unilateral protectionist policies and other challenges in international trade.

The SCO leaders stress on the importance of further improving the architecture of global economic governance, and deepening cooperation to build a transparent, predictable and stable environment for the development of trade, economic and investment cooperation through the consistent strengthening of the multilateral trading system based on the rules and regulations of the WTO, and through opposition to the fragmentation of global trade and trade protectionism in all its forms, it said.

“They believe that unilateral protectionist actions in violation of WTO rules and regulations undermine the multilateral trade system and threaten the world economy and trade,” it said. The member states also stressed on the importance of further deepening cooperation in order to bring forth an open world economy, consistently strengthen an open, inclusive, transparent, non-discriminatory and rule-based multilateral trading system, maintain the authority and effectiveness of WTO rules, and to prevent any unilateral protectionist actions in international and regional trade.

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