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(LEAD) S. Korean president advocates free trade at G20 summit

All News 22:46 July 07, 2017

(ATTN: RECASTS paras 2-3; ADDS photo)

SEOUL, July 7 (Yonhap) -- South Korean President Moon Jae-in expressed "strong support" for efforts by the world's 20 leading economies to fight protectionism and promote free trade, his office Cheong Wa Dae said Friday.

"South Korea opposes protectionism, and strongly supports G20 efforts to strengthen the multilateral trade system centered around the World Trade Organization and expand global free trade," Moon said in the first session of the Group of 20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, according to a script of his speech released by Cheong Wa Dae.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in (front row, second from R) attends the first session of the G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany on July 7, 2017. (Yonhap)

"President Moon also hailed the new G20 measures aimed at economic recovery. He stressed a need to strengthen the global financial safety net in reaction to the possible exposure of newly emerging economies to risks following sudden capital flows and problems stemming from such risks to developed economies," Cheong Wa Dae spokesman Park Soo-hyun said at a press briefing in Hamburg, according to Cheong Wa Dae.

The new South Korean leader also explained his administration's economic policy, which he called people-centered economy.

"Under a belief that previous policies had limits in addressing issues related to low growth and economic polarization, my new government is seeking a shift to a people-oriented economy," Moon was quoted as saying, also noting that his policy largely centered on job creation, fair competition and growth through innovation.

This year's G20 gathering was set to end Saturday, possibly with a joint statement of the G20 leaders that will likely highlight their joint efforts to ensure a lasting global recovery and keep global trade from backtracking.


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