British PM vows to fight protectionism at G20

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British Prime Minister David Cameron on Wednesday stressed his determination to fight protectionism at this week's G20 summit in Seoul, saying free trade was "the best future for our world economy."

Cameron was speaking in China before heading to Seoul for the leaders' summit of the Group of 20 advanced and emerging economies from Thursday, expected to focus on trade imbalances and the threat of a currency war.

He urged European nations to be "open to trade from China and not putting up trade walls", and said London and Beijing were on the same side against protectionist measures.

"We are two countries that together in the G20 and elsewhere will be fighting against protectionism, fighting against countries that want to put barriers up," Cameron said ahead of a business summit in Beijing.

"We know the best future for China, the best future for Britain, the best future for our world economy is to keep trade barriers down, to keep trade open, to progress and finish the Doha round.

"These are the shared initiatives that we have and Britain will go on arguing that in Europe, we should be open to trade from China and not putting up trade walls."

The Doha round of World Trade Organisation negotiations started in 2001 with a focus on dismantling obstacles to trade for poor nations, but discussions have long been stalled.

© 2010 AFP

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