Donald Trump at odds with world leaders at G7 Summit

10 June, 2018, 05:12 | Author: Edward Snyder
  • Donald Trump at the White House IFTAR dinner

Speaking on Saturday during a rare solo news conference, Trump said he pressed for the G-7 countries to eliminate all tariffs, trade barriers and subsidies in their trading practices.

The president said the US was "pretty close" to reaching an agreement on the North American Free Trade Agreement with Canada and Mexico and had discussed two types of sunset provisions in which any of the countries could leave the deal.

President Trump said retaliation tariffs from his allies were a "mistake" and warned that if it got as far as a trade war, then the United States would "win that war a thousand times out of a thousand".

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and French President Emmanuel Macron were especially vocal ahead of Trump's arrival.

"We're the piggy bank that everybody is robbing".

"The Prime Minister said nothing he hasn't said before - both in public, and in private conversation with the President."

Earlier while still in Quebec, Trump said he wants to make a deal on NAFTA, and he's open to working with the current pact or striking separate agreements with Canada and Mexico - as long as they agree to renegotiate every five years.

A member of Macron's team characterized the talks as "frank and robust", with Trump first repeating his lengthy diatribe about what he regards as unfair trade restrictions - before the Europeans responded with facts and figures they felt would blunt his argument.

Trump was the last G7 leader to arrive and on Saturday, he will probably be the first to leave, in a hurry to move on to his nuclear summit with North Korea's Kim Jong Un in Singapore.

"I don't blame other leaders for that", Trump said.




The source said: "We should remind ourselves why the G8 became the G7 - it was after Russian Federation illegally annexed Crimea".

"It allowed a dialogue, where for weeks there were uncoordinated unilateral actions and non-cooperation".

He followed up by tweeting: "PM Justin Trudeau of Canada acted so meek and mild during our @G7 meetings only to give a news conference after I left saying that, "US Tariffs were kind of insulting" and he "will not be pushed around".

Macron is aware of the latest twist on the communique and does not have a comment at this time, a French presidential official said.

He also denied the summit had been contentious, a remark that contradicted what one G7 official described as an " extraordinary" exchange on Friday in which Trump repeated a list of trade grievances, mainly concerning the European Union and Canada.

Trump has announced tariffs of up to $150 billion on Chinese goods over US complaints of Beijing's trade practices and its alleged theft of USA technology.

Canada has said it will retaliate with more than $16 billion in tariffs on a range of goods.

But tariffs on USA imports of cars and auto parts would devastate the Canadian auto industry, which is highly integrated with the US sector. "To have a great military, you need a great balance sheet", he said. "And that's a very profitable answer, if we have to do it".

Trudeau on Saturday rejected a USA demand for a sunset clause in NAFTA but said he was prepared to compromise on the issue, which is holding up talks to update the 1990s-era pact.

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