Minister L. Linkevičius calls for exploiting business opportunities in Asia
On 4 October in Vilnius, Lithuania’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs organized the second international trade policy conference “Shaping the Future of Trade: Outlook on Asia”. The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Linas Linkevičius delivered opening remarks, emphasizing the importance of trade rules and of embracing the potential of new technology in developing business relations with Asia.
“80% of Lithuania's trade with Asian partners is in line with WTO rules. A joint effort of all members is needed to strengthen the World Trade Organization that has been the primary guarantor of ensuring transparency and predictability of trade conditions,” said Lithuania’s Foreign Minister.
The Foreign Minister recalled that the EU’s free trade agreements (FTAs) were no less important for improving trade conditions with Asian partners and for opening up new markets. Since the entry into force of the EU-South Korea FTA in 2011, the exports of Lithuania to South Korea have increased 4 times. The EU and Japan's Economic Partnership Agreement entered into force on 1 February 2019. It has benefitted the Lithuanian exporters of cheese, textiles, and chemical products. In addition, the entry into force of trade agreements with Singapore and Vietnam is awaited.
Conference speakers included Xiaozhun Yi, Deputy Director General at World Trade Organization, representatives of the European Commission, and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Business and public representatives from Lithuania, Japan, China, and South Korea discussed the future of trade policy and relations with the Asia region.
Last year, the Foreign Minister discussed the importance of trade policy and the impact of global trade trends on businesses and citizens with the WTO Director-General and the EU Trade Commissioner.