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US protectionism to prolong crisis: Pranab

Source: PTI
March 06, 2009 18:51 IST
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Criticising the US for resorting to protectionism in the wake of the global financial crisis, India on Friday warned such a "negative" trend will have a cascading effect on major economies and undermine efforts to overcome the downturn in the shortest possible time.

"That the biggest economy in the world, the US, where this global financial tsunami originated, should be resorting to trade-restrictive practices is particularly disturbing," External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee said at a conclave here.

He said the US government's stimulus package imposing restrictions on public procurement or discouraging US firms from outsourcing or restricting foreign workers is not in keeping with the spirit of global cooperation.

"It also runs counter to the current efforts to stem the sharp decline in the economic growth worldwide, especially in the US and other developed markets," he said.

Asserting that it would be shortsighted to go into protectionist mode, Mukherjee dubbed the US move as a "negative trend" which is "likely to have a cascading effect in other major economies and thereby undermine the global efforts to overcome the current crisis in the shortest possible time-frame."
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