World

China’s Xi, Putin hit out at protectionism

By AAP Newswire

Protectionism and unilateralism are rearing their heads in global politics and the states of northeast Asia should work together to counter the trend, Chinese President Xi Jinping says.

"There are deep and complex changes underway in the international situation, the politics of force, unilateral approaches and protectionism are rearing their head," Xi told the Eastern Economic Forum (EEF) on Wednesday.

Russian President Vladimir Putin also hit out at economic protectionism, saying the barriers to trade is a particular challenge for Asia's economies.

"The global economy is more and more often encountering harsh forms of protectionism," he said

"Fundamental principles of trade, competition and economic benefits are being debased ... becoming hostage to ideological approaches.

"Clearly, this is a serious challenge for the whole global economy, especially for the dynamic growth of the Asia-Pacific region," he said.

As Donald Trump continues to up the ante on a trade war, with the US president recently threatening to place tariffs on all Chinese exports to the United States, Beijing is moving to further solidify its already-close partnership with Russia.

The forum under the slogan "The Russian Far East: Expanding the Range of Possibilities," is being held in Vladivostok with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe also attending.

Proposed by Putin in 2015, the EEF represents Russia's efforts to push forward cooperation in the Far East.