UK seeks G20 rally against unfair trade practices

FILE PHOTO: UK Secretary of State for International Trade Anne-Marie Trevelyan speaks at the Conservative Party’s annual conference, in Manchester, Britain October 3, 2021. REUTERS / Phil Noble / File Photo

LONDON – UK Trade Minister Anne-Marie Trevelyan will push her G20 counterparts on Tuesday to end what she has called market-distorting practices and rally to reform of the World Trade Organization.

Trevelyan, who took office last month in a cabinet reshuffle, will pick up where his predecessor Liz Truss left off: advocating for a level playing field in international trade as Britain seeks to carve out a new role after Brexit.

“We cannot and will not allow UK companies that play by the rules to be damaged and compromised by the market-distorting practices of other countries,” she said in a statement ahead of the meeting. G20 trade ministers in Italy.

“Today’s meeting is a great opportunity to rally our G20 partners and forge alliances capable of defending the global trading system and helping it move into the 21st century.

After spending years arguing that the freedom to enter into free trade agreements outside the European Union would be one of the main benefits of Brexit, the government has repeatedly called for the modernization of global trade regulations .

Trevelyan will denounce “harmful and bogus” industrial subsidies – a criticism his department has once used to refer to China. China is a member of the G20 and some consider that it benefits from WTO rules which treat it as a developing economy.

Italy’s prime minister said on Friday he was confident that the meeting of G20 leaders at the end of October would result in a strong commitment to reform the WTO.

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