GENEVA - World Trade Organization (WTO) director-general Roberto Azevedo on Monday called on members to avoid triggering an escalation in global trade barriers.
"In light of recent announcements on trade policy measures, it is clear that we now see a much higher and real risk of triggering an escalation of trade barriers across the globe," said Azevedo in a meeting of all WTO members.
The WTO chief responded to a series of announcements from WTO members in recent days which suggested that a range of new, unilateral trade barriers could soon be put into force.
This came after United States President Donald Trump announced last week that the United States was set to impose 25 percent of tariff on steel imports and 10 percent for aluminum to protect the domestic industries, citing national security concerns.
"We cannot ignore this risk and I urge all parties to consider and reflect on this situation very carefully. Once we start down this path, it will be very difficult to reverse direction," Azevedo stressed.
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