Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Peter O’Neill urged Asia-Pacific nations to increase their participation in the World Trade Organisation (WTO) on Friday, five days after a tense regional summit held in the Pacific nation ended in acrimony.
Deep divisions between the United States and China over trade and investment stymied cooperation at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum (APEC), leaving the 21 member nations unable to issue a traditional joint communique on shared goals for the first time in the summit’s history.
O’Neill, who also served as APEC chairman, issued a statement in lieu of the joint communique, which acknowledged a “small number” of forum members could not agree on issues including trade polices and how the WTO functioned.
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