Foreign Minister Attends Meetings on Future of Global Trade

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ZAGREB, February 23, 2019 – Croatian Minister of Foreign and European Affairs Marija Pejčinović Burić attended a meeting of EU foreign ministers on Friday which expressed concern about the current global trade crisis and support to protect the values of the multilateral trade system, the ministry said in a statement.

The informal meeting of the Foreign Affairs Council was held in Bucharest as part of the Romanian presidency of the European Union. The main issues discussed were the modernisation of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and trade relations between the European Union and the United States of America.

The ministers expressed concern about the current crisis in global trade relations and about challenges faced by the WTO. They supported the European Commission’s initiatives aimed at preserving the values of the multilateral trade system, the statement said.

Also discussed was the current state of EU-US trade relations and the intention to initiate negotiations to ease the present tensions in trade caused by the introduction of protectionist measures.

Reuters news agency said that EU ministers were aware that US President Donald Trump might impose punitive tariffs on EU car imports if they waited too long with their decision.

“Diplomats say Germany, whose exports of cars and parts to the United States are worth more than half the EU total, wants to press ahead. But France, with very few U.S. car exports, is reluctant to move before the European Parliament election in May, convinced that dealing with Trump is not a vote winner,” Reuters said.

The European Commission informed the ministers of the state of trade talks with Mexico, the South American trade bloc Mercosur, Australia, New Zealand, China, Chile and Indonesia, the Croatian ministry said in its statement.

More news on Croatia and the European Union can be found in the Politics section.


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