CANBERRA, Australia Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong warned that U.S. protectionist measures might lead to a tit-for-tat trade war, which will make all countries suffer, major Australian media reported on Friday.

Lee made the remarks in written answers to The Australian and Fairfax Media ahead of his visit to Australia to attend the Australia-ASEAN summit to be held on March 17 to March 18 in Sydney.

"Whether we label the (U.S. President Donald) Trump administration as protectionist, it is clear that they take a radically different approach towards trade," Lee was quoted as saying.

He said Singapore had been directly affected by the U.S. trade measures.

Trump announced steep tariffs on steel (25 percent) and aluminum (10 percent) imports last week. Austalia, along with Canada and Mexico, was given exemption by Washington.

"Beyond their direct impact, these trade measures have set a precedent, and other countries will be under pressure to retaliate," Lee said.

"If trust is broken and tit-for-tat trade wars break out, all countries, big or small, will suffer." -

Source: NAM News Network