New Delhi, India —Ministers from Third World nations Thursday called for increased economic cooperation between developing countries and criticized industrial nations for erecting trade barriers.

Indian Prime Minister “Rajiv Gandhi, opening a two-day ministerial meeting on the Global System of Trade Preferences, or GTSP, said developing nations need to “deepen economic cooperation . . . and strengthen collective self-reliance.”

Gandhi said developing nations had focused on trade.

“There is a disturbing retreat from the commitment to multilateralism which characterized the consensus on development issues… in the ’60s and ’70s,” Gandhi said. “Industrial countries, instead of becoming more responsive to the problems facing the developing world, have become more rigid.”

A number of delegates from the 49 countries attending the meeting said the current global economic crisis has increased poverty, slowed growth and created severe debt crises in the developing world.

Although the world has recovered from the worst of the financial cruncuneven and unstable.

Developing nations launched GTSP talks at an October 1982 economic summit in an attempt to reduce protectionism and win preferential trade concessions from industrialized countries.

The two-day meeting in New Delhi marks the first time ministers from developing countries has met to review specific steps to encourage trade among their countries.

Calling the GSTP the “most promising” approach to increasing worldwide economic cooperation, Brazilian Foreign Minister Olavo Setubal, conference vice chairman, contended Third World nations.

Developed nations have “made no contributions to bring about effective solutions,” he said.

“Protectionism has sharply increased. The United States and the European Economic Community have been raising more and more trade barriers to developing countries exports,’ the Brazilian minister said.

Setubal said _protectionism has choked off exports the developing world’s only means of paying its foreign debt and recovering from economic recession.

Article extracted from this publication >>  August 2, 1985