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Chile denies it will lead regional opposition to Trump's protectionism

Xinhua, February 15, 2017 Adjust font size:

The Chilean Minister of Foreign Affairs, Heraldo Munoz, denied Tuesday that his country would lead regional opposition to U.S. President Donald Trump's protectionist policies.

"We are not seeking to lead. We will only work with all our partners from Latin America and other regions who share the same perspective. This means we will take a specific role, but simply do what we feel is best for the national interest," Munoz told a press conference.

However, the minister was clear that Chile remains in favor of free trade and integration.

"This has given very good results. It has created prosperity, it has generated jobs, it has allowed us to lower poverty, tackle inequality...and Chile continues to reject protectionist moves," he outlined.

Trump recently pulled his country out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal, made up of the U.S., Chile and 10 other countries. Chile said that it disagreed with Washington's decision but declared the deal was dead.

Munoz announced that Chile's President Michelle Bachelet and Argentina's President Mauricio Macri had agreed to hold a meeting of foreign and trade minister from the Pacific Alliance and Mercosur.

"This is an important sign at a time when international uncertainty...and protectionist and isolationist signs are rising around the world," he said.

"At such times, we need to be clear and firm that we will continue to follow openness and international economic integration. There is no other path. The path of protectionism sparked trade wars and recession in the past," he concluded. Enditem