US, global partners wrestle over trade stance

Author

19 March, 2017

Breaking a decade-long tradition of endorsing open trade, G20 finance ministers and central bankers made only a token reference to trade in their communique on Saturday, a clear defeat for host nation Germany, which fought the new USA government's attempts to water down past commitments.

Two European officials described Mnuchin as friendly but "tough". "Having said that, we want to re-examine certain agreements".

They also said the US delegation at the G-20 was routinely checking back with its counterparts in Washington on certain issues, leading some Europeans to wonder with whom they were negotiating, Mnuchin or Trump. Other prominent participants will be European Central Bank President Mario Draghi, China's finance minister, Xiao Jie, and the host finance minister, Wolfgang Schaeuble of Germany.

Others suggested that the G20 leaders' meeting in Hamburg this July could be the real opportunity to bring the USA on board.

US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on Saturday shrugged off an outcry over the omission of a long-standing anti-protectionist pledge from a G20 statement, saying language used in the past is "irrelevant". Without mentioning a country by name, he said, "Maybe one or the other important member state needs to get a sense of how global cooperation works".

"The US says that on this issue, the position hasn't been clearly defined in Washington and they need time", added the source.

"That's more of an issue for G20 leaders" when they meet in Hamburg in July, he said.

More news: Narada Sting Operation: Calcutta High Court Orders CBI Probe

In response to Mr Trump's threats to impose import penalties on foreign-produced cars, a move that would hit Germany's influential motoring industry, Dr Schäuble said that "protectionism is not the answer".

The world's financial leaders will renounce competitive devaluations and warn against exchange rate volatility, a document showed on Friday, but are likely to struggle to find common ground on trade and financing against climate change.

"I regret that our discussions today were unable to reach a satisfying conclusion on two absolutely essential priorities that our world and which France would have liked to see the G20 continue to take firm and concerted action on", said French Finance Minister Michel Sapin.

Asked about climate change funding, Mick Mulvaney, Trump's budget director, said on Thursday: "We consider that to be a waste of money".

Both China and Germany have found themselves in the crosshairs of U.S. criticism over their massive trade surpluses.

Recently, President Trump proposed to take the axe to environmental financing, slashing funds in his first national budget proposal for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) by a third, as well as eliminate contributions linked to the United Nations climate change programmes.


More news


  • Key parts of Trump's 'Travel Ban 2.0' blocked by Hawaii federal judge

    The order was signed on 6 March 6 after an initial, broader ban was suspended by federal courts. The Republican president has said the policy is critical for national security.
    Ravens sign Brandon Carr to four-year deal

    Ravens sign Brandon Carr to four-year deal

    Wilcox (Tampa Bay) have also signed elsewhere, and fellow cornerback Morris Claiborne is also receiving interest from other teams. Presumably, the guarantees won't impact their ability to dump Clairborne after a year if it's a multi-year deal.

    ANOTHER Taylor Swift Stalker Has Been Arrested! Get The Scary Deets!

    Taylor Swift has been granted an order of protection against a man who has allegedly been stalking her since December of 2016. TMZ reports that Jaffar has been arrested on charges of stalking and burglary, and is being held in jail on a $20k bond.
  • Paul Merson: This is what will happen when Chelsea take on Stoke

    Paul Merson: This is what will happen when Chelsea take on Stoke

    Stoke ended the game with 10 men after Phil Bardsley was dismissed for a second bookable offence, following a foul on abregas. First, we will try to win the next game in the league against Stoke and, when the cup comes, we are going to try to win it.
    Kim Kardashian Offers Her Theory On The Paris Robbery

    Kim Kardashian Offers Her Theory On The Paris Robbery

    Arrests were made in connection to the robbery in January, with 10 people being charged. The new episode of " Keeping Up With The Kardashians " airs this Sunday at 9 p.m.
    Iran Receives First Purchased Airbus A330

    Iran Receives First Purchased Airbus A330

    The Airbus A330 landed at Mehrabad International Airport on Saturday morning, official IRNA news agency reported. Iran Air's A330-200 features a two-class cabin layout, seating 32 passengers in business and 206 in economy.
  • Unemployment rate unchanged; jobs decline

    Unemployment rate unchanged; jobs decline

    Over-the-month, both initial claims and weeks claims also grew by 10.5% and 9.9% respectively in January 2017. There were 3,300 people receiving benefits in January 2017 and 3,400 the same month previous year .
    Intruder with backpack arrested at White House

    Intruder with backpack arrested at White House

    The Secret Service is trying to determine how Tran managed to get near the building without being detected, officials said. The man was arrested by a Secret Service member near the south entrance to the executive resident, according to the report.
    Federal Judge Not Ready to Rule on Revised Travel Ban

    Federal Judge Not Ready to Rule on Revised Travel Ban

    Chaos ensued, with confusion over the dictates of Trump's order playing out at the nation's airports, which saw repeated protests. While the new order contains changes, the basic legal problems remain, said Washington's attorney general, Bob Ferguson.
  • Due to discrimination by USA Hockey, women's team boycotts world championship

    Due to discrimination by USA Hockey, women's team boycotts world championship

    They threatened to do the same to other players who spoke up about the inequity in USA Hockey's funding, and sadly, it worked. Soccer Federation, calling for an investigation into what they asserted were discriminatory pay practices.
    Musk offers to fix Australia's energy crisis in 100 days

    Musk offers to fix Australia's energy crisis in 100 days

    The state of South Australia has been gripped by an energy crisis that has seen surging prices and frequent blackouts. Musk's response: "Tesla will get the system installed and working 100 days from contract signature or it is free ".
    Finisar Corporation Earnings Ahead: Quick Glance

    Finisar Corporation Earnings Ahead: Quick Glance

    Year to date (YTD) refers to the period beginning the first day of the current calendar or fiscal year up to the current date. Heading into the earnings release, covering analysts have a consensus target price of $42.20 on Finisar Corporation shares.