Trump delivers warning on trade as he leaves G-7 summit

Pauline Gross
June 10, 2018

American allies are fuming over new tariffs on steel and aluminum imported into the USA, and over the president saying those tariffs will strengthen national security.

The fraught, contentious summit was like none other in memory, upending decades of worldwide cooperation on trade and policy with America's most steadfast allies, from Canada, Japan and Europe.

Mr. Trump also delayed a one-on-one meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron, whom he feted with a state dinner at the White House in April.

"We stand by the commitments made in the G7 communique", a senior United Kingdom government source said. "I think it would be good for the world, I think it would be good for Russian Federation, I think it would be good for the United States, I think it would be good for all of the countries of the current G7", Trump said.

On Friday, French President Emmanuel Macron appeared to indicate room for negotiation ahead of a delayed meeting with Trump, telling reporters "Sometimes we disagree".

Trump has also caused concern among his party and even within his administration in seeking to fix US relations with the Kremlin.

"The United States has been taken advantage of for decades and decades, and we can't do that anymore", Trump said.

"We're like the piggy bank that everybody's robbing ― and that ends", the president said. "And they understand it's going to happen", Trump said.

The eight-page G7 communique issued earlier stated that "we stand ready to take further restrictive measures to increase costs on Russia" if its behavior makes it necessary.

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He said that other countries were imposing "massive tariffs" on the US. You can go back 50 years frankly.

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He arrived late at the summit site in Quebec, and he's already announced he will leave the party early, probably missing a meeting on climate change.

A German government official said the plan would see direct talks between the European Union and the United States start straight away, and last around two weeks, focused on how much, or whether, European Union trade policy endangers USA national security interests.

The statement comes just a few weeks after Trump made a decision to impose large tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from the European Union, Canada, and Mexico and a few months after Trump hit the rest of the world with the same tariffs.

Speaking about Russia's military incursion in Crimea, a peninsula that was part of Ukraine, Trump on Saturday blamed President Obama for the annexation.

That global order appears to be in disarray now, nearly everyone agrees, including the United States leader largely responsible for the upheaval.

The text of the annual G7 joint communique is usually all but finalized before the leaders meet for two days of glad-handing and group photo opportunities, but this year officials were still negotiating even as Trump headed for his plane.

Talks to modernize NAFTA, which started last August, have effectively stalled as Canada and Mexico resist USA demands for major changes such as the sunset clause and boosting the North American content of autos made in the three nations.

Other reports by GizPress

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