South Korea to oppose trade protectionist moves through diplomacy: finance minister

August 17, 2016 9:15 PM EDT

South Korea's new finance minister Yoo Il-ho answers questions from reporters during his visit to a port in Pyeongtaek, South Korea, January 15, 2016. REUTERS/Kim Hong-Ji

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SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korea's finance minister said on Thursday the country is planning to oppose all kinds of trade protectionist moves through diplomatic measures such as bilateral talks and high-level meetings with other countries.

Finance Minister Yoo Il-ho said in a speech the global economy faces growing risks from increasing tendencies of trade protectionism, Brexit and the U.S. presidential election campaign.

He did not name any countries as getting more protectionist, though he noted results of a survey by the country's biggest business lobby group this month.

"Two out of three exporters in key industries have said they can tangibly feel protectionism from antidumping measures taken by the U.S. and India on products like steel and chemicals," said Yoo, citing the survey.

The Federation of Korean Industries (FKI) said 10 out of 15 major industry associations said they were being affected either directly or indirectly by trade protectionism.

Protectionism is likely to grow globally in the near future, the survey said, while the election of either U.S. presidential candidate would likely exacerbate the situation.

The finance minister said the government will use planned talks with other countries and high-level meetings to oppose all forms of protectionism and aim to create more projects involving cooperation with different countries.

Yoo will meet his Japanese counterpart on Aug. 27 while President Park Geun-hye will have a summit meeting in Russia in early September.

(Reporting by Cynthia Kim and Christine Kim; Editing by Richard Borsuk)

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