- Title: Peru's Kuczynski warns of emerging protectionism at APEC summit
- Date: 18th November 2016
- Summary: LIMA, PERU (NOVEMBER 18, 2016) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF EXTERIOR OF MINISTRY OF CULTURE VARIOUS OF SECURITY LINED UP WITH RIOT GEAR
- Embargoed: 3rd December 2016 15:48
- Keywords: Peru summit inauguration Kuczynski Obama
- Location: LIMA, PERU
- City: LIMA, PERU
- Country: Peru
- Topics: Government/Politics,Elections/Voting
- Reuters ID: LVA00158Z32VB
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Peru's President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski warned of emerging protectionism in a speech opening the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit on Friday (November 18), noting that history had shown the dangers of failing to promote free trade.
He opened his address as summit host in Lima praising trade, even in spite of strong headwinds.
"World trade has stopped growing in the last two years. And we see the effect all around. We've seen, for example, big shipping lines go bust and have to be reorganised. We've seen loss of jobs, because trade has slowed down. I think this should be an important point to emphasise during APEC. It is fundamental for world trade to be growing again, and protectionism be defeated," he said.
He then went on to survey the global mood and alluded to dark times from the previous century.
"There is unfortunately in the world, and we see it in recent elections, not only in the U.S. and also Britain, projectionist tendencies are taking over. And for anybody who wants to promote protection I suggest they read an economic history of the 1930's. And so we really have to think about this and have to deliver a very strong message at this APEC. It will be difficult to do, because APEC is not just one or two countries. It's 21 countries. But we have to deliver an unequivocal message to the world."
Leaders in the 21-nation economic bloc including the United States, Russia and China were seeking to salvage hopes for regional trade, as prospects of a Donald Trump presidency in the U.S. sounded a possible death knell for the U.S-led Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) free trade pact.
Kuczynski took office as Peru's president this past summer and asked the opposition-controlled Congress to help him fight income inequality and ensure all Peruvians have access to running water, health care and free primary education.
The 77-year-old Oxford-educated former investment banker, deemed "elitist" by opponents in his tight election, said he would modernise Peru with policies aimed at raising the incomes of the poorest while fighting racism, sexism and corruption.
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