US says global trade must be fair as well as free

Mnuchin said that language was "in the past" and "not really relevant."

German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble speaks during a news conference during the G20 finance ministers meeting in Baden-Baden, southern Germany, Saturday, March 18, 2017. The world's top economic powers have failed to agree on a joint position explicitly opposing trade protectionism amid pushback from the U.S. government. (Uwe Anspach/dpa via AP)

BADEN-BADEN, Germany (AP) — U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says the U.S. believes in free trade, despite the omission of a ban on protectionism in the joint statement from an international financial summit he attended.

The statement dropped language from previous G-20 statements that said countries should resist “all forms” of trade barriers.

Mnuchin said that language was “in the past” and “not really relevant.”

He said: “We believe in free trade,” but added “balanced trade needs to be what’s good for us and what’s good for other people, a win-win situation.”

Mnuchin said the U.S. would work with international partners but review trade deals that disadvantage the U.S.: “It’s free trade, balanced trade and fair trade.”

 

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