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Japanese FM voices discontent over U.S. protectionism
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11:56, February 14, 2009

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Japanese Finance Minister Shoichi Nakagawa expressed discontent over possible protectionism in global trade ahead of talks with U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner Friday.

Nakagawa told a press conference in Tokyo that the world should stop trade protectionism moves such as a proposed "Buy American" provision in Washington's economic stimulus bill, which would require U.S. companies to use domestic steel and manufacturing products in infrastructure projects funded by the bill.

The meeting, the first between the two since Geithner took office under the administration of U.S. President Barack Obama in January, comes ahead of the two-day meeting of finance ministers and central bank chiefs from the Group of Seven industrialized economies in Rome starting later in the day.

Nakagawa said he would not make the exchange rate issue one of his focuses during the meeting, adding that the sagging export was mainly due to the global economic downturn.


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