MOSCOW, September 11. /TASS/. The global business community must help overcome the trend towards protectionism in global trade, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov stated during a meeting with the leadership of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and the World Chambers Federation (WCF).
"We are glad that the General Council of the World Chambers Federation has chosen Moscow as the place to hold its session," he said. "I’ve heard that your efforts are quite successful, and that the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry has established the necessary conditions for business and getting to know the Russian capital."
The Russian top diplomat has expressed confidence that the session taking place in Moscow will contribute to the resolution of many global economic issues closely related to the political agenda. "The situation in international relations is such that the role of business community in forming a positive agenda and ensuring that the economic and investment base plays a determining role in the relations between states is growing drastically," the minister noted. "The stronger the economic base of relations between states is, the fewer temptations there are to politicize certain processes and the bigger the motivation is to concentrate on real issues that must be decided in the interest of our country’s people and entrepreneurs to their mutual benefit."
Lavrov also pointed out that the efforts in this area are undermined by the fact that more and more often, the sphere of economy is dominated "not by rules of competition, but by protectionism in its most aggressive forms, along with trade wars." "All this undermines the established cooperative ties and chains of added value," the Russian foreign minister said. "This is why we have a lot of respect towards the issues that you resolve. You are always guided by the idea of mutual benefit. This is why your voice has so much weight in defending the principles of an open, multilateral trade system, the basic principles of the WTO and the need for its reform, in order to avoid unilateral incidents."
Lavrov mentioned "the fragmentation of the global economic space and the change in focus from integration processes to bilateral deals" as another negative trend in the modern world. "In this regard, we also hope for your cooperation in promoting multilateral agreements that will harmonize various economic structures, initiatives of various states," he addressed the leadership of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and the World Chambers Federation (WCF). "We are promoting what Russian President Vladimir Putin named the 'big Eurasian partnership' with the participation of all states and countries located on our enormous continent."