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WASHINGTON, April 21 (Reuters) - Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso said on Friday he does not think the G20 debate on trade will lean toward favoring protectionism over free trade ahead of the group's summit in July.
"I don't think any country believes the global economy should shift to protectionism from free trade," Aso told a news conference after attending a gathering of Group of 20 finance leaders.
"Even the United States isn't saying that protectionism is good. What it's saying is that it will put its national interest first." (Reporting by Leika Kihara; Editing by Andrea Ricci)