As the U.S. and China edge closer to a full-blown trade war, Canada has urged all nations to act to preserve the pillars of the world trading system.

“We need to cherish the organizations that have been the cornerstone of the world economic order,” Trade Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne said in an interview in Singapore on Saturday.

Speaking after several days of meetings to strengthen ties with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, whose 10 members represent Canada’s sixth-largest trading partner with annual merchandise trade worth about $17 billion, Champagne said plans by U.S. President Donald Trump to impose tariffs on a wide array of Chinese imports threatened the stability of the international trading order.

“We have all benefited from the world trade order that was put in place after the Second World War, including the U.S.,” Champagne said. “All of us need to take a step back and take a look at what we’ve achieved over the last few decades.”

He said Canada remained engaged at the World Trade Organization to “work alongside other nations to make sure that there’s order” in world trade.

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