A declaration that highlights and underscores the importance of an “open world economy” where there is benefit for countries from globalization was signed by the leaders of the Brics emerging economies.
An “open and inclusive” multilateral trading system as dictated by the World Trade Organization rules was also supported by Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.
There are unprecedented challenged being faced by the multilateral trading system, they also said.
These comments by the leaders of the Brics nations was made at a time when the is unprecedented trade challenges created by US tariffs.
The leaders have been meeting at the 10th Brics summit in Johannesburg.
“We reaffirm the centrality of the rules-based, transparent, non-discriminatory, open and inclusive multilateral trading system, as embodied in the World Trade Organization, that promotes a predictable trade environment and the centrality of the WTO,” the declaration signed by the five le4aders said.
However, they added: “We recognise that the multilateral trading system is facing unprecedented challenges.
“We underscore the importance of an open world economy, enabling all countries and peoples to share the benefits of globalisation, which should be inclusive and support sustainable development and prosperity of all countries.
“We call on all WTO members to abide by WTO rules and honour their commitments in the multilateral trading system.”
The is the first Brics meeting following the imposition of tariffs on steel and aluminum imports by US President Donald Trump and threats of a slew of other tariffs – including import tariffs on cars and auto parts by him.
Trump has threatened imposition of more levies on Chinese goods worth $200 billion in September.
China has also been accused by Trump of using unfair trade practices even during his campaign days for the president elections and he wants to reduce the trade deficit with China. Reduction of the country’s trade deficits was made a big point in the campaign trail by Trump.
Trade deficits are hurting US manufacturing industry, believes Trump and he has been vocal during the campaign trail and later on Twitter that something must be done by the US to tackle trade deficits.
“We must work together… to safeguard the rule-based multilateral trading regime, promote trade and investment, globalisation and facilitation, and reject protectionism outright”, said Chinese President Xi Jinping speaking in Johannesburg during the meeting.
(Adapted from BBC.com)