The world infested with the “ghosts of a trade war” warns Argentina ambassador
The Argentine ambassador to the United States, Jorge Argüello, warned that the world is infested with the “ghosts of a trade war” as he witnesses the protectionist measures applied by developed countries.
The diplomat told reporters that those ghosts on a global trade dispute are “agitated in an interested and irresponsible way by some lobby sectors, especially from developed countries.”
The ambassador's remarks come at a time of high tension between Argentina and the United States and European countries whose governments have lately allegedly imposed barriers to Argentine products, such as citrus fruits, beef and bio-diesel.
Most recently, the United States, Japan and Mexico, as before the EU, filed complaints against Argentina before the World Trade Organization (WTO) for allegedly restricting the importation of goods, through the system of import licences and the one for one policy, demanding companies wanting to import should match with exports.
“This does not constitute a contentious process but rather it grants both sides the opportunity to find a negotiated solution to a difference before embarking in a contentious disputes settlement process”, said ambassador Argüello in a column published in the pro-Cristina Fernandez newspaper “El Argentino”.
He added that “if protectionist countries are those which purchase less, then Argentina is far from that. In 2011, among members of G20, Argentina was the second country to most increase imports. And measured by level of imports, Japan was eighth and the US fourteenth”. Both countries have filed complaints against Argentina at the WTO.
Ambassador Argüello admitted that as a result of the economic-financial crisis which originated in the developed countries in 2008 and 2009, there has been a clear tendency among nations to adopt commercial measures that “affect relations both bilateral and multilateral”.
However in spite of Argüello’s column, the Buenos Aires media on Sunday advanced that this year, following the restrictions imposed by the government on imports, Argentina will most probably reach the target of a trade surplus of 10 billion dollars and if current conditions persist, it could even approach 12 billion dollars.