Asian, European ministers seek ways to tackle trade protectionism

12:30 | 24/09/2017 Cooperation

Economic leaders from Asia and Europe nations have gathered for the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) in Seoul, the Republic of Korea, to discuss ways to cope with rising protectionism in trade and to cooperate in the next industrial revolution.

ASEM logo - Source: internet

According to the RoK’s Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy, the 7th ASEM economic ministers' meeting, which is being held on September 21-22, has seen the attendance of economic ministers and senior officials from 51 nations.

The main theme of this year's meeting is "Reconnecting Asia-Europe: Innovative Partnership for Inclusive Prosperity."

The meeting is expected to provide an opportunity for Asia and Europe to discuss ways to promote trade and investment, as well as to come up with joint responses to rising protectionism.

Trade has been a major driver for economic growth in ASEM partners, the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy said, noting ASEM's share of global trade increased from 54 percent in 1995 to 64 percent in 2015.

The changing industry landscape led by digitalization will also be on the meeting’s agenda, which requires joint cooperation in enhancing economic connectivity and digital infrastructure across borders.

For sustainable and inclusive growth, the policymakers will touch on the fourth industrial revolution and the new climate framework under the Paris Agreement aimed at reducing carbon emissions.

ASEM was established in 1996 to boost ties between Asian and European countries. It now composes 20 Asian and 31 European nations, as well as the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the European Union.

Theo VNA