The world needs global trade, open markets and fair competition, not protectionism, says the World Economic Forum’s Philipp Roesler, a former German economy minister.
SHOWS: DAVOS, SWITZERLAND (JANUARY 16, 2017) (REUTERS) – Global cooperation, open markets and free trade are the key to success in the world’s economy, not protectionism, said the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) board member Philipp Roesler on Monday (January 17).
Speaking to Reuters Television ahead of the official opening of the annual meeting in Davos, Roesler, a former German economy minister, said “we do see a trend towards more protectionism.”
“From our point of view we need a strong stance in terms of global trade, open markets, free trade and fair competition.”
“The solution cannot be that politicians are focusing more and more on a national level, because then, the globalisation of the business will be out of any control or regulation.”
Roesler said “the best way is global cooperation, … the purpose of this year’s annual meeting.”
His remarks came shortly before German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble issued a warning to U.S. President-elect Donald Trump over the dangers of protectionist trade policies.
Asked whether the WEF’s importance was shrinking due to the absence of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Francois Hollande and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Roesler said “for the first time we have the Chinese president here at the World Economic Forum and this at a time when in the United States and many other countries the focus is more domestic.”
“We understand this as a great signal to have the Chinese president here to discuss the world economy and the necessity for a world economy.”
The WEF’s annual meeting begins on Tuesday, Jan. 17, with Chinese President Xi Jinping speaking in the morning.