Russian president vows to end protectionism
14 Nov 2009
Russian president Dmitry Medvedev assured the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) members that protectionist measures imposed by Russia would end after the economic crisis.
He was addressing the delegates at the on-going APEC CEO Summit in Singapore. Russia had hiked tariffs on imported vehicles to protect the Russian car industry during the crisis.
He said leaders from the APEC forum meeting in Singapore this weekend had to "do anything we can to refrain from protectionism in any sphere".
"Russia is well aware of the harm of protectionism, especially in the crisis period," he told delegates, stressing that any recent trade barriers "are of short-term nature and will come to an end".
Japanese trade minister Masayuki Naoshima had said at the APEC meetings that he was concerned by Russia's move in January to drastically hike tariffs on imports of both new and second-hand cars.
Russia's neighbour Finland has also expressed frustration over increases on export duties for Russian timber - on which Finnish paper mills are heavily reliant - aimed at encouraging Russia's own timber processing sector.