April 16, 2018 / 7:46 AM / 9 months ago

Japan, China finance ministers reaffirm importance of multilateral free trade

Japan's Finance Minister Taro Aso attends an upper house parliamentary session in Tokyo, Japan March 19, 2018. REUTERS/Issei Kato

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japanese and Chinese finance ministers agreed on the importance of multilateral free trade in the face of global fears of trade protectionism, a Japanese official said on Monday.

Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso and China’s Finance Minister Liu Kun discussed the matter on the sidelines of high-level economic dialogue between Japan and China.

“There was no reference to (U.S. President Donald) Trump. They reaffirmed the importance of free trade in general,” the official told reporters after the meeting.

The bilateral economic dialogue was co-chaired by Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono and the Chinese government’s top diplomat, State Councillor Wang Yi.

Reporting by Tetsushi Kajimoto; Editing by Jacqueline Wong

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